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Channel programs News

Wade Tyler Millward

“We can‘t be essential unless our partners are skilled in our products and confident in going to their clients with our products and selling them with us and for IBM,” IBM channel chief Kate Woolley said.

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IBM has started giving registered members of its PartnerWorld program access to the training, badges and enablement IBM sales employees get along with a new learning hub for accessing materials.

The expansion is part of the Armonk, N.Y.-based tech giant’s investment in its partner program, IBM channel chief Kate Woolley told CRN in an interview.

“We can‘t be essential unless our partners are skilled in our products and confident in going to their clients with our products and selling them with us and for IBM,” said Woolley (pictured), general manager of the IBM ecosystem.

[RELATED: Channel Chief Kate Woolley: ‘No Better Time To Be An IBM Partner’]

Partners now have access to sales and technical badges showing industry expertise, according to a blog post Tuesday. Badges are shareable on LinkedIn and other professional social platforms. IBM sales representatives and partners will receive new content at the same time as it becomes available.

“This is the next step in that journey in terms of making sure that all of our registered partners have access to all of the same training, all of the same enablement materials as IBMers,” Woolley told CRN. “That’s the big message that we want people to hear. And then also in line with continuing to make it easier to do business with IBM, this has all been done through a much improved digital experience in terms of how our partners are able to access and consume.”

Among the materials available to IBM partners are scripts for sales demonstrations, templates for sales presentations and positioning offerings compared to competitors, white papers, analyst reports and solution briefs. Skilling and enablement materials are available through a new learning hub IBM has launched.

“The partners are telling us they want more expertise on their teams in terms of the IBM products that they‘re able to sell and how equipped they are to sell them,” Woolley said. “And as we look at what we’re hearing from clients as well, clients want that. … Our clients are saying, ‘We want more technical expertise. We want more experiential selling. We want IBM’ – and that means the IBM ecosystem as well – ‘to have all of that expertise and to have access to all the right enablement material to be able to engage with us as clients.’”

The company has doubled the number of brand-specialized partner sellers in the ecosystem and increased the number of technical partner sellers by more than 35 percent, according to IBM.

The company’s accurate program changes have led to improved deal registration and introduced to partners more than 7,000 potential deals valued at more than $500 million globally, according to IBM. Those numbers are based on IBM sales data from January 2022 to August.

Along with the expanded access to training and enablement resources, Woolley told CRN that another example of aligning the IBM sales force and partners was a single sales kickoff event for employees and partners. A year ago, two separate events were held.

“I want our partners to continue to feel and see this as a big investment in them and representative of how focused we are on the ecosystem and how invested we are,” she said.

Wade Tyler Millward

Wade Tyler Millward is an associate editor covering cloud computing and the channel partner programs of Microsoft, IBM, Red Hat, Oracle, Salesforce, Citrix and other cloud vendors. He can be reached at wmillward@thechannelcompany.com.

Tue, 04 Oct 2022 07:15:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.crn.com/news/channel-programs/ibm-expands-partner-access-to-training-resources
Killexams : 25 Reasons to Get Excited About Teaching

Louie F. Rodriguez

Louie F. Rodriguez is a professor and the Bank of America Chair of Education Leadership, Policy, and Practice in the School of Education at the University of California, Riverside.

Teaching at any level is one of the toughest jobs out there. Today, teachers are increasingly faced with challenges that may bring one to question whether they should even consider entering the profession at all. Whether it is the ongoing need for substitute teachers as the pandemic persists, controversies over curriculum, the ebbs and flows of school policy and practice, or the day-to-day working conditions that impact teacher life, there is certainly no shortage of issues that confront the field.

These conditions can leave an educator asking: “Should I even teach at all?” “Is it worth it?” “Will these larger challenges impact the quality of my experience as a qualified, credentialed, and dedicated classroom teacher?” For example, will I, as a teacher, be able to use research-informed pedagogical approaches that I have been taught in my teacher-preparation program? Will I be able to inspire and mentor students and even use my own educational journey to engage students in the classroom?

While these concerns certainly bring a series of potential challenges, I often think about the powerful role that educators and teaching play in our society, especially in the context of the last two years. For example, we know that vulnerable communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic were already marginalized by social, political, economic, education, and health-related disparities before March of 2020. These realities make the promise of education and the role of the teacher and teaching so much more significant in today’s context, especially for our nation’s most vulnerable.

It is in this context that I developed 25 reasons to teach. Rather than allowing the possible obstacles to teaching cloud our perspective on why the profession is so vital today, let’s focus on the opportunities that teaching brings every single day to the classroom. I think this is particularly relevant for teachers starting a new school year, future teachers currently in teacher education programs, and future teachers who are considering the field of education.

As a current or future educator, your teaching will likely provide you with opportunities to do the following:

  1. Build a meaningful connection with a student.
  2. Prioritize a student’s humanity.
  3. Allow students to reinvent themselves every single day.
  4. Exercise maximum flexibility, especially as we continue to navigate the pandemic.
  5. Recognize the collective trauma from No. 4 and its ongoing impact on just “being,” not only for students, but for teachers and families as well.
  6. Be a teacher who gives students second, third, and fourth chances.
  7. Reduce past systemic harm once the student enters your classroom by promoting equity-driven practices.
  8. Build community with your fellow teachers in your school, district, and/or community.
  9. Establish a partnership with families, especially those who have struggled to build such partnerships in the past.
  10. Spark an interest in learning for the seemingly disengaged student.
  11. Recognize the leadership qualities in that one student who needed to hear the words, “You are a leader.”
  12. Provide students with an intentional space for hearing their voices in the classroom.
  13. Inspire students by showing them who they were, who they are, and where they are going.
  14. Show students their community’s excellence.
  15. Redefine what educational excellence looks like in students’ various communities (peers, families, communities, society).
  16. Reflect back to your students their historical, cultural, and community contributions.
  17. Be the one teacher who your students look forward to seeing every day.
  18. Provide your students with instruction that validates their life experiences.
  19. Create pedagogical activities that (re)position students as teachers and facilitators of learning.
  20. Redefine “knowledge” with your students; students are indeed creators of knowledge.
  21. Model equitable practices in the classroom; equity is more than a principle but is also an action.
  22. Center cariño (care) within the educational endeavor.
  23. Forge hope for students in your classroom every single day.
  24. Wake up every single day knowing that you will make a difference in the life of a student.
  25. Realize the promise of public schooling every single day through your teaching and dedication.

While it is understandable that teachers and some prospective teachers may be questioning—or even doubting the teaching profession—my hope is that current and prospective teachers realize that they are in the right place and that our students, families, and communities need them. Teachers cannot do this important work alone and our leaders, policymakers, and teacher development professionals play a critical role in ensuring their success, especially in the context of all that the profession is.

Tue, 27 Sep 2022 07:28:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.edweek.org/teaching-learning/opinion-25-reasons-to-get-excited-about-teaching/2022/09
Killexams : IBM’s former CEO downplays the importance of a college degree for six-figure earning ‘new collar’ jobs that now make up half of its workers

A four-year bachelor’s degree has long been the first rung to climbing America’s corporate ladder.

But the move to prioritize skills over a college education is sweeping through some of America’s largest companies, including Google, EY, Microsoft, and Apple. Strong proponents say the shift helps circumvent a needless barrier to workplace diversity.

“I really do believe an inclusive diverse workforce is better for your company, it’s good for the business,” Ginni Rometty, former IBM CEO, told Fortune Media CEO Alan Murray during a panel last month for Connect, Fortune’s executive education community. “That’s not just altruistic.”

Under Rometty’s leadership in 2016, tech giant IBM coined the term “new collar jobs” in reference to roles that require a specific set of skills rather than a four-year degree. It’s a personal commitment for Rometty, one that hits close to home for the 40-year IBM veteran.

When Rometty was 16, her father left the family, leaving her mother, who’d never worked outside the home, suddenly in the position to provide.

“She had four children and nothing past high school, and she had to get a job to…get us out of this downward spiral,” Rometty recalled to Murray. “What I saw in that was that my mother had aptitude; she wasn’t dumb, she just didn’t have access, and that forever stayed in my mind.”

When Rometty became CEO in 2012 following the Great Recession, the U.S. unemployment rate hovered around 8%. Despite the influx of applicants, she struggled to find employees who were trained in the particular cybersecurity area she was looking for.

“I realized I couldn’t hire them, so I had to start building them,” she said.

In 2011, IBM launched a corporate social responsibility effort called the Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH) in Brooklyn. It’s since expanded to 11 states in the U.S. and 28 countries.

Through P-TECH, Rometty visited “a very poor high school in a bad neighborhood” that received the company’s support, as well as a community college where IBM was offering help with a technology-based curriculum and internships.

“Voilà! These kids could do the work. I didn’t have [applicants with] college degrees, so I learned that propensity to learn is way more important than just having a degree,” Rometty said.

Realizing the students were fully capable of the tasks that IBM needed moved Rometty to return to the drawing board when it came to IBM’s own application process and whom it was reaching. She said that at the time, 95% of job openings at IBM required a four-year degree. As of January 2021, less than half do, and the company is continuously reevaluating its roles.

For the jobs that now no longer require degrees and instead rely on skills and willingness to learn, IBM had always hired Ph.D. holders from the very best Ivy League schools, Rometty told Murray. But data shows that the degree-less hires for the same jobs performed just as well. “They were more loyal, higher retention, and many went on to get college degrees,” she said.

Rometty has since become cochair of OneTen, a civic organization committed to hiring, promoting, and advancing 1 million Black individuals without four-year degrees within the next 10 years.

If college degrees no longer become compulsory for white-collar jobs, many other qualifications—skills that couldn’t be easily taught in a boot camp, apprenticeship program, or in the first month on the job—could die off, too, University of Virginia Darden School of Business professor Sean Martin told Fortune last year.

“The companies themselves miss out on people that research suggests…might be less entitled, more culturally savvy, more desirous of being there,” Martin said. Rather than pedigree, he added, hiring managers should look for motivation.

That’s certainly the case at IBM. Once the company widened its scope, Rometty said, the propensity to learn quickly became more of an important hiring factor than just a degree.

This story was originally featured on Fortune.com

More from Fortune:

A 2007 flashback: home flippers are in trouble again

Managing Gen Z is like working with people ‘from a different country’

The Renault Nissan empire once held together by fugitive Carlos Ghosn may slowly be unraveling

PayPal tells users it will fine them $2,500 for misinformation, then backtracks immediately

Sun, 16 Oct 2022 06:27:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://finance.yahoo.com/news/ibm-former-ceo-downplays-importance-165139880.html
Killexams : 3 IBM employees share how mentorship and connection to their heritage helped shape their careers

In honor of National Hispanic Heritage Month, we asked three IBM employees to share their experiences. Romelia Flores is an IBM distinguished engineer and a master inventor currently on IBM's client engineering team based in Dallas, Texas. Robert Loredo is the IBM quantum ambassador worldwide lead and a master inventor based in South Florida. Catherine Treviño is a z Hardware brand technical specialist based in Poughkeepsie, New York.

In this Q&A, these three employees open up about how mentorship has benefitted their careers and share the importance of giving back to fellow members of the Hispanic community. 

Tell us about your journey at IBM.

Flores: I joined IBM over 30 years ago as an intern and student at the University of Texas at Austin where I obtained a degree in computer science. As a software developer, I thrive on leveraging technology to accelerate business and collaborate with clients to drive app modernization. IBM has superlative talent around the world, many of whom have guided my journey. Being a strong technologist means being a continuous learner of technology as well as establishing a strong network.

Loredo: I joined IBM in 2004 and am fortunate to have a successful career because of IBM's network and community. I have 20 years of experience in enterprise product development leveraging leading-edge technologies, most recently with quantum computing, a technology that's expected to solve intractable problems that today's most powerful classical supercomputers find challenging to solve.

Treviño: My journey at IBM has been short but accomplished! I joined in 2020 as an intern and rising senior from the University of Texas – Rio Grande Valley. Upon completing my internship, I accepted an offer and returned in 2021. I've since switched roles to a different business unit, thanks to the guidance of fellow volunteers of Hispanics@IBM, the community for Hispanic IBM employees.

How has mentorship impacted your career?

Treviño: Networking led to a new opportunity within my first year at IBM. When I first joined full-time, I quickly realized the role was not the right fit. As a first-generation professional, I wasn't sure how to navigate the situation. I chatted with Alan, IBM D&I leader for the Hispanic community, who connected me with Cleo, a Hispanic executive council leader, who brought up an open role. I'm grateful for that connection! Long story short, I'm now part of Cleo's global sales team, where I help financial market clients find solutions with our z Systems.

Loredo: I'm grateful for the mentor who saw my potential and found a unique way to teach me complex subjects. While at Miami-Dade College, I struggled with the courses for engineering majors. My professor knew I enjoyed music and began teaching me mathematics using music as an analogy. That was my 'aha!' moment. My grades improved, allowing a transfer to the University of Miami, where I completed my bachelor's and master's degrees in computer engineering. That moment, when my professor found an unconventional way to teach, had a profound impact on me. I use that technique today. I wrote a book that teaches quantum computing implementation and I use analogies to explain it.

As a mentor, what advice do you share with mentees?

Flores: I've mentored hundreds of college students and IBM employees, including distinguished engineers and technologists. I've been told— especially by females and underrepresented minorities — that they've never seen a technologist with my level of impact, and they ask, "What's your secret to success?" This inspired me to develop the "Eight Cs: Blueprint for Success" which I believe are key attributes for attaining success: competence, communication, commitment, creativity, collaboration, confidence, community, and chuckle – we often forget about this last one, but our work should be fun!

This post was created by IBM with Insider Studios.

Tue, 27 Sep 2022 12:00:00 -0500 en-US text/html https://www.businessinsider.com/sc/3-ibm-employees-on-the-power-of-mentorship-and-culture-at-work
Killexams : IBM Research Secures Future Safe From Quantum Attacks

Quantum computing will bring unimagined innovations to the world when it finally arrives in full glory. Still, quantum remains in the research labs at companies like IBM, Google, and Microsoft. While companies and research institutions are investing billions of dollars to increase the capacity of quantum systems, a time will come in the following years, or decades, when researchers will reach "quantum supremacy." But these large quantum marvels could also jeopardize the security of critical information systems. Researchers, including IBM are working to develop new security algorithms that will be resilient to these attacks.

The Quantum Threat to Security

While quantum can solve computing challenges far beyond what is possible today, its ability to find the factors of large prime numbers makes it the ideal cybersecurity safe cracker once quantum computing systems mature in their scale, quality, and speed. Every computer system and every bit of "secure" data could become vulnerable to attack from quantum-equipped nefarious actors. The World Economic Forum "estimate(s) that over 20 billion digital devices will need to be either upgraded or replaced in the next 10-20 years to use the new forms of quantum-resistant encrypted communication. We recommend that organizations start planning for this now.

What constitutes "adequate size" might provide us some false comfort: a 2019 study suggested that a computer with 20 million qubits would take eight hours to break modern encryption. Today's quantum computers are on the order of only 100 qubits. But while that implies that the threat is in the distant future, one must consider that a bad actor doesn't need to wait for the massive quantum system to materialize. The "Steal now, crack later" approach leads to a latent future security threat. Consequently, organizations should deploy quantum-safe security as soon as possible to minimize future risk.

Stopping Quantum Attacks Before They Begin

Consequently, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), a bureau of the U.S. Department of Commerce, has been conducting an ongoing search for quantum-safe security algorithms that are both secure and efficient. After all, we need our laptops, cars, and mobile phones to also be able to resist attacks from quantum-equipped bad actors. After four rounds of submissions, NIST selected four algorithms from a slate of 82 candidates. IBM Research had submitted 3 of the four chosen algorithms. All submissions have been subjected to research by industry scrutiny by government agencies, academic scientists, and mathematicians. This process is now reaching its conclusion; the NIST is expected to publish standards based on these 4 algorithms sometime in 2024.

The NIST contest covers the two aspects of security that could be vulnerable to quantum computing: public key encapsulation (used for public-key encryption and key establishment) and digital signatures (used for identity authentication and non-repudiation). For the former, NIST selected the CRYSTALS-Kyber algorithm. NIST selected three algorithms for signatures: CRYSTALS-Dilithium, FALCON, and SPHINCS+, with CRYSTALS-Dilithium as the primary algorithm in the signature category.

The Telco Industry Steps Up to Address Quantum Safe

On September 29, GSMA announced the formation of the GSMA Post-Quantum Telco Network Taskforce, of which IBM and Vodafone are initial members, to help define policy, regulation and operator business processes to enhance protections of telecommunications in a future of advanced quantum computing. Since virtually all organizations and sectors conduct commerce on the internet, and the 800 providers whose pipes that carry all the internet traffic, the Telco industry is a good place to start. We expect other sectors to follow suit, perhaps starting with banking, government, and health care.

IBM Adds Quantum-Safe Security to the IBM z16

Given the magnitude of the potential risks, and the predominance of IBM Z systems in security-critical applications, IBM has included future-proof digital signature support in its latest z16 mainframe using CRYSTALS-Kyber and CRYSTALS -Dilithium algorithms selected by NIST. z16 implements this algorithm across multiple layers of firmware to help protect business-critical infrastructure and data from future quantum attacks. IBM has said it is also working to bring these new methods to the broader market.

In addition, IBM has developed a multi-step process to assist clients toward rapidly making institutions quantum safe. The company works with clients to identify where they are vulnerable to quantum-based cryptography attacks, assess cryptographic maturity and dependencies, and identify near-term achievable cryptographic goals and projects. The risks clients may face vary substantially based on the type of applications and data an organization handles and the state of its current cryptography.

Conclusions

Quantum computing's potential threat to global information security may seem to be a distant and abstract risk. However, the inevitable advances of quantum technology and the "Steal now, crack later" approach bad actors are undertaking to make quantum-safe a genuine and pressing matter for vendors and IT organizations. IBM wasted no time bringing that technology to market in the IBM z16. IBM Research has contributed three of the four algorithms the NIST quantum-safe contest has selected to be the most viable, secure, and efficient of the 70 techniques evaluated.

Beyond the NIST-approved algorithms, IBM Is working to provide “crypto agility”, helping organizations not only replace the soon-to-fail existing algorithms but also transform their security practices to remain resilient as new threats emerge in the post-quantum world. Creating crypto observability, enabling ongoing monitoring and actions on crypto-related security items, will help keep the world safer from bad actors with virtually unlimited computing capacity at their disposal.

More information can be found at here.

Disclosures: This article expresses the opinions of the authors, and is not to be taken as advice to purchase from nor invest in the companies mentioned. Cambrian AI Research is fortunate to have many, if not most, semiconductor firms as our clients, including Blaize, Cerebras, D-Matrix, Esperanto, FuriosaAI, Graphcore, GML, IBM, Intel, Mythic, NVIDIA, Qualcomm Technologies, Si-Five, SiMa.ai, Synopsys, and Tenstorrent. We have no investment positions in any of the companies mentioned in this article and do not plan to initiate any in the near future. For more information, please visit our website at https://cambrian-AI.com.

Wed, 28 Sep 2022 12:00:00 -0500 Karl Freund en text/html https://www.forbes.com/sites/karlfreund/2022/09/29/ibm-research-prepares-for-a-world-safe-from-quantum-attacks/
Killexams : IBM Whale Trades Spotted

Someone with a lot of money to spend has taken a bearish stance on IBM IBM.

And retail traders should know.

We noticed this today when the big position showed up on publicly available options history that we track here at Benzinga.

Whether this is an institution or just a wealthy individual, we don't know. But when something this big happens with IBM, it often means somebody knows something is about to happen.

So how do we know what this whale just did?

Today, Benzinga's options scanner spotted 11 uncommon options trades for IBM.

This isn't normal.

The overall sentiment of these big-money traders is split between 27% bullish and 72%, bearish.

Out of all of the special options we uncovered, 7 are puts, for a total amount of $1,280,392, and 4 are calls, for a total amount of $243,682.

What's The Price Target?

Taking into account the Volume and Open Interest on these contracts, it appears that whales have been targeting a price range from $105.0 to $165.0 for IBM over the last 3 months.

Volume & Open Interest Development

Looking at the volume and open interest is an insightful way to conduct due diligence on a stock.

This data can help you track the liquidity and interest for IBM's options for a given strike price.

Below, we can observe the evolution of the volume and open interest of calls and puts, respectively, for all of IBM's whale activity within a strike price range from $105.0 to $165.0 in the last 30 days.

IBM Option Volume And Open Interest Over Last 30 Days

Biggest Options Spotted:

Symbol PUT/CALL Trade Type Sentiment Exp. Date Strike Price Total Trade Price Open Interest Volume
IBM PUT TRADE NEUTRAL 12/16/22 $115.00 $905.6K 351 1.8K
IBM CALL SWEEP BULLISH 06/21/24 $125.00 $151.2K 27 120
IBM PUT SWEEP BEARISH 01/20/23 $125.00 $113.7K 4.0K 5
IBM PUT SWEEP BEARISH 10/14/22 $120.00 $70.6K 816 322
IBM PUT TRADE BULLISH 01/19/24 $165.00 $64.4K 53 13
Symbol PUT/CALL Trade Type Sentiment Exp. Date Strike Price Total Trade Price Open Interest Volume
IBM PUT TRADE NEUTRAL 12/16/22 $115.00 $905.6K 351 1.8K
IBM CALL SWEEP BULLISH 06/21/24 $125.00 $151.2K 27 120
IBM PUT SWEEP BEARISH 01/20/23 $125.00 $113.7K 4.0K 5
IBM PUT SWEEP BEARISH 10/14/22 $120.00 $70.6K 816 322
IBM PUT TRADE BULLISH 01/19/24 $165.00 $64.4K 53 13

Where Is IBM Standing Right Now?

  • With a volume of 2,052,099, the price of IBM is up 1.05% at $118.99.
  • RSI indicators hint that the underlying stock may be approaching oversold.
  • Next earnings are expected to be released in 8 days.

What The Experts Say On IBM:

  • Morgan Stanley has decided to maintain their Overweight rating on IBM, which currently sits at a price target of $152.

Options are a riskier asset compared to just trading the stock, but they have higher profit potential. Serious options traders manage this risk by educating themselves daily, scaling in and out of trades, following more than one indicator, and following the markets closely.

If you want to stay updated on the latest options trades for IBM, Benzinga Pro gives you real-time options trades alerts.

© 2022 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.

Tue, 11 Oct 2022 13:56:00 -0500 text/html https://www.benzinga.com/markets/options/22/10/29224106/ibm-whale-trades-spotted
Killexams : IBM: A High-Yielding Income Generation Idea Worth A Look
Day 1 - Mobile World Congress 2022

David Ramos

By The Valuentum Team

International Business Machines Corporation (NYSE:IBM) has become a fundamentally different business in the past few years, one focused on providing hybrid cloud computing offerings. The company is a stellar free cash flow generator which enables IBM to reward investors via generous dividend increases, with shares of IBM yielding ~5.1% as of this writing. Substantial near-term headwinds remain, largely due to the various exogenous shocks seen of late (such as major inflationary pressures, rising interest rates, supply chain hurdles, and raging geopolitical tensions), though IBM is still worth considering as a high-yielding income generation idea.

IBM's Key Investment Considerations

Investment Considerations

Image Source: Valuentum

IBM solves business problems via integrated hardware/software solutions that leverage IT and its knowledge of business processes. Its solutions help reduce a client's costs or enable new capabilities that generate revenue. The company was founded in 1924 and is headquartered in New York.

Back in 2019, IBM bought Red Hat (a top provider of open source cloud software) through a ~$34 billion deal which made IBM a contending hybrid cloud provider. IBM is looking to seize what it describes as a ~$1 trillion hybrid cloud opportunity, and accurate growth in this area has been encouraging. IBM's revamped management team is working hard to turn things around after the company made various blunders during the 2010s decade. Its current Chairman and CEO, Arvind Krishna, has done a solid job righting the ship at IBM since taking on the top role in 2020.

In November 2021, IBM spun off its legacy business tax-free to shareholders as a new publicly traded entity, Kyndryl Holdings, Inc. (KD). Initially, IBM retained a 19.9% stake in Kyndryl though the firm intends to exit that position within 12 months of the spinoff.

Earnings Update

On July 18, IBM reported earnings for the second quarter of 2022 that beat both consensus top- and bottom-line estimates. Its GAAP revenues rose by 9% year-over-year to hit $15.5 billion with strong growth at its Red Hat, various consulting services, and hybrid infrastructure offerings being key here. When removing foreign currency headwinds arising from the strong US dollar seen of late from the picture, IBM's non-GAAP constant currency revenues were up 16% year-over-year last quarter. IBM's portfolio optimization efforts are having a very powerful impact on its financial performance.

The firm's GAAP gross margin fell by ~185 basis points year-over-year last quarter, falling down to 55.4%. However, economies of scale helped drive its GAAP income from continuing operations up by 81% year-over-year in the second quarter, rising to $1.5 billion. There is some noise here due to the separation of IBM's legacy businesses (via the spinoff of Kyndryl) from its core operations. Keeping that noise in mind, IBM's underlying operations have performed quite well of late.

During its second quarter earnings call, IBM's management team noted the firm now forecasted that its full-year free cash flows would come in near $10.0 billion in 2022, at the low end of its previous forecast. IBM generated $3.6 billion in free cash flow (defined as net operating cash flow less 'payments for property, plant, and equipment' and 'investment in software') while spending $3.0 billion covering its dividend obligations during the first half of 2022. Its modest share repurchases during this period were related to tax withholding purposes as the new IBM is focused on retaining cash to invest in the business. We appreciate that IBM's dividend obligations remain well-covered by its traditional free cash flows.

The company exited June 2022 with a net debt load of $42.8 billion (inclusive of short-term debt, exclusive of restricted cash). One of the biggest risks to IBM's dividend is its large net debt load. IBM had $7.6 billion in cash, cash equivalents, and current marketable securities on hand at the end of June 2022 which provides the company with ample liquidity to meet its near-term funding needs.

IBM continues to expect that its constant currency revenues will grow decently this year (in the mid-single digit range), though sustained foreign currency headwinds are expected to offset strong demand for its offerings, to a degree. Over the long haul, we forecast that under its new management team, IBM will return to stable revenue growth which in turn should see the company's free cash flows swell higher. That would allow IBM to boost its dividend in a sustainable manner going forward, though we caution that its net debt load could limit the size of any future payout increases.

Dividend Analysis

Table of IBM's Dividend Cushion ratio as derived by Valuentum.

IBM's forward-looking dividend coverage is weighed down negatively by its large net debt load. (Valuentum)

The Dividend Cushion Ratio Deconstruction, shown in the image up above, reveals the numerator and denominator of the Dividend Cushion ratio. At the core, the larger the numerator, or the healthier a company's balance sheet and future free cash flow generation, relative to the denominator, or a company's cash dividend obligations, the more durable the dividend.

The Dividend Cushion Ratio Deconstruction image puts sources of free cash in the context of financial obligations next to expected cash dividend payments over the next 5 years on a side-by-side comparison. Because the Dividend Cushion ratio and many of its components are forward-looking, our dividend evaluation may change upon subsequent updates as future forecasts are altered to reflect new information.

In the context of the Dividend Cushion ratio, IBM's numerator is smaller than its denominator, which suggests weak forward-looking dividend coverage. However, given IBM's strong and stable cash flow profile, we view its forward-looking dividend coverage favorably when considering IBM's ability to tap capital markets into account. Should IBM stumble for any reason, its ability to make good on its payout may be in danger.

IBM's Economic Profit Analysis

The best measure of a firm's ability to create value for shareholders is expressed by comparing its return on invested capital ['ROIC'] with its weighted average cost of capital ['WACC']. The gap or difference between ROIC and WACC is called the firm's economic profit spread. IBM's 3-year historical return on invested capital (without goodwill) is 41.6%, which is above the estimate of its cost of capital of 9.2%.

In the chart down below, we show the probable path of ROIC in the years ahead based on the estimated volatility of key drivers behind the measure. The solid grey line reflects the most likely outcome, in our opinion, and represents the scenario that results in our fair value estimate. Assuming IBM's accurate portfolio optimization efforts go as planned, the firm's ability to generate shareholder value (which historically has been impressive) should continue to improve.

Adjusted Return on Invested Capital

Image Source: Valuentum

IBM's Cash Flow Valuation Analysis

Cash Flow Generation

Image Source: Valuentum

Our discounted cash flow process values each firm on the basis of the present value of all future free cash flows, net of balance sheet considerations. We think IBM is worth $136 per share with a fair value range of $101-$171 per share. Shares of IBM are trading moderately below our fair value estimate as of this writing.

The near-term operating forecasts used in our enterprise cash flow model, including revenue and earnings, do not differ much from consensus estimates or management guidance. Our model reflects a compound annual revenue growth rate of 3.4% during the next five years, a pace that is higher than the firm's 3-year historical compound annual growth rate of -10.3%.

Our model reflects a 5-year projected average operating margin of 17.6%, which is above IBM's trailing 3-year average. Beyond Year 5, we assume free cash flow will grow at an annual rate of 2% for the next 15 years and 3% in perpetuity. For IBM, we use a 9.2% weighted average cost of capital to discount future free cash flows.

Valuation Assumptions

Image Source: Valuentum

Valuation Breakdown

Image Source: Valuentum

IBM's Margin of Safety Analysis

Range of Potential Outcomes

Image Source: Valuentum

Although we estimate IBM's fair value at about $136 per share, every company has a range of probable fair values that's created by the uncertainty of key valuation drivers (like future revenue or earnings, for example). After all, if the future were known with certainty, we wouldn't see much volatility in the markets as stocks would trade precisely at their known fair values.

In the graphic up above, we show this probable range of fair values for IBM. We think the firm is attractive below $101 per share (the green line), but quite expensive above $171 per share (the red line). The prices that fall along the yellow line, which includes our fair value estimate, represent a reasonable valuation for the firm, in our opinion.

Concluding Thoughts

The steady decline in IBM's legacy business since 2010 represents a major reason why the firm spun off Kyndryl in November 2021. Going forward, IBM will need to prove that as a leaner and more focused enterprise, it can maintain solid revenue and operating income growth over the long haul. We think that will be the case, though substantial near-term headwinds remain. Investors looking for an income generation idea backed up by a strong cash flow profile should take a closer look at IBM.

Tue, 20 Sep 2022 20:10:00 -0500 en text/html https://seekingalpha.com/article/4542216-ibm-stock-high-yielding-income-generation-idea-worth-look
Killexams : Better Buy: IBM Stock vs. 2-Year Treasury Notes

Investors this year increasingly turned away from dividend stocks in favor of the rising yields being offered on bonds. Given that investors can now earn a 4.3% return on a 2-year Treasury note, many prefer that guaranteed return to the risks of putting money into the stock market.

International Business Machines (IBM 1.85%) offers a dividend yield that exceeds that bond return. But with a bear market in progress, are investors better served to take a chance on the cloud stock or to take the 4.3% return at virtually zero risk?

IBM and its dividend

IBM didn't participate in the bull market of the 2010s. The stock dropped as its tech businesses suffered a considerable growth slowdown. In an effort to change that, IBM pivoted into the cloud computing sector aggressively, in part via its $34 billion purchase of Red Hat in 2019. Grand View Research forecasts a compound annual growth rate of 16% through 2030 for the cloud industry. Growth like that could certainly help both IBM and its stock.

Also, IBM spun off its managed infrastructure business into a new public company, Kyndryl. This business was less of a fit with the parent company amid its pivot to the cloud. Separating it off should make it easier for IBM to grow its revenue.

Time will tell if these moves can help the stock price recover. Nonetheless, IBM currently pays its shareholders $1.65 per share every quarter, or $6.60 per share annually. At the current stock price, that adds up to a yield of 5.6% per year. Moreover, depending on your financial situation, the IRS may tax your dividends at a lower capital gains rate, which can offer an added advantage.

Additionally, IBM hiked its payout annually for 27 consecutive years, making it a Dividend Aristocrat. That status carries some importance as many income investors will be more inclined to buy and hold IBM stock because of this status. Also, since abandoning Dividend Aristocrat status tends to hurt a stock, management will probably prioritize maintaining it by continuing to raise those payouts.

Investors also can also reinvest their dividend payments into more IBM stock. However, such newly purchased shares will pay you the dividend yield at that time. The return will rise if the stock falls since investors can buy the exact cash return at a lower price. Conversely, cash yields will drop if the stock rises, but those investors still benefit since the stock has increased in value.

What to know about 2-year Treasury notes

U.S. Treasury notes offer more stability than stocks such as IBM. Investors who purchase the 2-year Treasury note receive semiannual interest payments. At the current interest rate of 4.3%, investors will receive a 2.15% cash return on their invested amount in each of the subsequent three six-month periods. In the fourth period, when the note matures, investors receive the final 2.15% payment along with the return of their principal.

Investors should also be aware that bond values can fluctuate. If interest rates drop, the value of the bond will fall; the opposite will happen if rates rise. This affects investors if they decide to sell the bond early. Upon maturity, the note will return to its par (or nominal) value.

Additionally, bond interest payments are subject to federal income tax but exempt from state and local taxes. In some cases, this is higher than taxes on dividends. Still, bond issuers are obligated to make such payments. In contrast, IBM faces no legal obligation to continue its dividend.

Also, like with a stock, investors can reinvest their interest payments into more notes or other forms of Treasury bonds. However, those purchases will be subject to the prevailing interest rates at that time.

IBM or the 2-year Treasury note?

Investors who lack much risk tolerance should choose the Treasury note. Given its guaranteed return, they will not have to worry about volatility.

Nonetheless, for investors comfortable with buying stocks, IBM is a surprisingly strong buy. The cloud industry is in growth mode, which should propel IBM stock to a long-awaited turnaround. Moreover, IBM has repeatedly shown it wants to hold on to its Dividend Aristocrat status. This should provide its income investors returns that are not only larger than the bonds offer, but also likely to increase in size.

Will Healy has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Fri, 14 Oct 2022 00:20:00 -0500 Will Healy en text/html https://www.fool.com/investing/2022/10/14/better-buy-ibm-stock-vs-2-year-treasury-note/
Killexams : IBM’s Cloud Acquisition Charge Continues With Dialexa

Cloud News

Mark Haranas

IBM continues to spend millions to buy hybrid cloud companies, as the company makes its sixth acquisition in 2022 with Dialexa.

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IBM continues to spend millions on buying hybrid cloud companies with the unveiling of its acquisition of engineering consulting specialist Dialexa to boost its cloud charge.

Since IBM CEO Arvind Krishna took the reins in April 2020, IBM has acquired more than 25 companies, including many hybrid cloud businesses.

In February alone, IBM acquired cloud consultant services standout Sentaca, as well as Microsoft Azure consultancy all-star Neudesic—with the two purchases squarely aimed at boosting IBM’s hybrid and multi-cloud services capabilities.

[Related: UK To Probe Amazon, Google, Microsoft’s Cloud Dominance]

Looking at the Armonk, N.Y.-based company’s purchase of Dialexa, IBM will gain 300 skilled product managers, designers, full-stack engineers and data scientists. Dialexa will become part of IBM’s Consulting business unit, which spearheads the company’s digital product engineering services in the Americas.

“Dialexa’s product engineering expertise, combined with IBM’s hybrid cloud and business transformation offerings, will help our clients turn concepts into differentiated product portfolios that accelerate growth,” said John Granger, senior vice president of IBM Consulting, in a statement.

Krishna: Hybrid Cloud A ‘Competitive Advantage’

Dialexa marks IBM’s sixth purchase in 2022 with the goal of boosting its hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence abilities.

Along with buying Dialexa, Sentaca and Neudesic, IBM has also acquired Randori, an attack surface management cybersecurity specialist that helps protect hybrid cloud environments.

Earlier this year, IBM’s CEO said hybrid cloud and artificial intelligence are top of mind for his company in terms of investment and the future.

“We are integrating technology and expertise—from IBM, our partners and even our competitors—to meet the urgent needs of our clients, who see hybrid cloud and AI as crucial sources of competitive advantage,” Krishna said in March. “And we are ready to be the catalyst of progress for our clients as they pursue the digital transformation of the world’s mission-critical businesses.”

In 2021, IBM’s hybrid cloud revenue jumped 19 percent compared with 2020, comprising 35 percent of its total revenue.

IBM’s Acquisition Of Dialexa

Based in Dallas and Chicago, Dialexa delivers a suite of digital product engineering services to help customers create transformative products to drive business outcomes.

Dialexa’s 300-strong engineers and skilled IT experts advise and create custom digital products for customers, which include Deere & Company, Pizza Hut U.S. and Toyota Motor North America. Financial terms of the Dialexa deal were not disclosed.

IBM said Dialexa provides deep experience delivering end-to-end digital product engineering services consisting of strategy, design, build, launch and optimization services across cloud platforms including Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure.

“Digital product engineering represents the tip of the spear for competitive advantage,” said Dialexa CEO Scott Harper in a statement. “IBM and Dialexa’s shared vision for delivering industry-defining digital products could be a game-changer.”

Mark Haranas

Mark Haranas is an assistant news editor and longtime journalist now covering cloud, multicloud, software, SaaS and channel partners at CRN. He speaks with world-renown CEOs and IT experts as well as covering breaking news and live events while also managing several CRN reporters. He can be reached at mharanas@thechannelcompany.com.

Fri, 23 Sep 2022 09:04:00 -0500 en text/html https://www.crn.com/news/cloud/ibm-s-cloud-acquisition-charge-continues-with-dialexa
Killexams : IBM Acquires Dialexa

IBM (NYSE:IBM) acquired Dialexa, a Dallas TX and Chicago, IL-based digital product engineering services firm.

The amount of the deal was not disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter of this year and is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory clearances.

The acquisition is expected to enhance IBM’s product engineering expertise and provide end-to-end digital transformation services for clients. Upon close, Dialexa will join IBM Consulting, strengthening IBM’s digital product engineering services presence in the Americas.

Founded in 2010 and led by CEO Scott Harper, Dialexa delivers a suite of digital product engineering services, enabling organizations to create new products to drive business outcomes. The company has deep experience delivering end-to-end digital product engineering services consisting of strategy, design, build, launch, and optimization services across cloud platforms including AWS and Microsoft Azure. Its team of 300 product managers, designers, full-stack engineers and data scientists, based in Dallas and Chicago, advise and create custom, commercial-grade digital products for clients such as Deere & Company, Pizza Hut US, and Toyota Motor North America.

FinSMEs

26/09/2022

Mon, 26 Sep 2022 15:12:00 -0500 FinSMEs en-US text/html https://www.finsmes.com/2022/09/ibm-acquires-dialexa.html
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