International Business Machines Corp. doesn’t plan to lock itself into another precise earnings forecast after ditching its long-held goal for 2015 profit.
Chief Financial Officer Martin Schroeter said IBM is unlikely to put in place another “absolute” earnings-per-share (EPS) roadmap. He said there’s still value in laying out the complex company’s strategy for investors.
“We are going to have to be as transparent as we have been about the business and what it can earn over time,” Schroeter said today at an RBC Capital Markets investor conference. He added that the technology giant isn’t looking for any big, transformative acquisitions.
Last month, IBM Chief Executive Officer Ginni Rometty tossed out the company’s goal to reach $20 a share in adjusted earnings by 2015 after sales dropped for a 10th straight quarter and demand for servers and other hardware dwindled. Rometty, who took over in 2012, had been trying to transform IBM while adhering to the five-year profit forecast laid out by her predecessor, Sam Palmisano.
IBM is under pressure to manage through a shift in corporate spending that has been a drag on revenue. Technology customers are increasingly moving data and software to the cloud, instead of on-site servers, lessening the demand for IBM hardware and the sales and maintenance staff who support it. The company has said it expects adjusted profit to fall this year for the first time since 2002.