What Recession? IBM Bucks the Notion

What Recession? IBM Bucks the Notion

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samuel-palmisano-ibm.jpgBy now, much of corporate America is hunkered down in economic uncertainty. Not IBM.

In a spirited message in the annual report sent to shareholders on Monday,  I.B.M.’s chief executive, writes:

“We entered this turbulent period strong, and we expect to exit it stronger. We will simply not ride out the storm. Rather, we will take a long-term view, and go on offense.”

Mr. Palmisano struck a similar tone when the company reported its strong quarterly results in late January.

In his lengthy “letter from the chairman,” Palmisano presents a detailed case for I.B.M.’s comparative optimism. It centers in good part on the assumption that countries — and large corporations — around the world are going to make investments in so-called smart infrastructure projects in transportation, electrical grids, health care information technology, telecommunications, food distribution and water systems. (Read full article in New York Times)


  1. While I share the enthusiasm and optimism that you foster here in your website I feel compelled to offer that your good news regarding IBM needs to be weighed against the reality of what Mr. Palmisano and other senior execs at IBM are really doing to the company. While Mr. Palmisano was proclaiming all the good news and positive forecast for the company, he was simultaneously firing thousands of American workers and shipping their jobs overseas–all this at the same time he visited the Whitehouse in search of some of the stimulus millions–no doubt to create more jobs overseas. Where’s the good news in that? I don’t mean to rain on your parade, but isn’t it somewhat less of a good news story when the whole story is known? Please continue to tell us all the good news, but do your homework before you tell us half a story–it’s all public record.

  2. From the previous comment I assume it is only good news if it fits the writers criteria. I would prefer IBM to outsource it’s jobs then to accept stimulus money to maintain US jobs and then have the government turn around and borrow the money overseas thereby compounding bad news.

  3. Thanks for liking GNN generally, all readers welcome.

    Often the only way companies can stay alive these days is to use overseas labour. This way they keep many jobs in the US safe and without the need for bailout money. To me personally this is good news. In the context of all the bad news being reported about companies going bust. But I do respect other’s viewpoints.

    The way I see it, change happens, and we are a part of the global system, “the world is flat” – great book by the way. We must work with it rather than against it. That way we thrive.

    Dyson did a similar move here in the UK. Shifting production overseas. But they are still here – and still making a but profit for the economy.

    Adapt and survive I say.

    PS. Geri understands well that some news may not seem good to some. She respects other’s viewpoints. It is very hard to guarantee that a news story is “totally good” from all viewpoints.

    To me, seen in a wider context, this story is good. Others may disagree and they are respected.