Cowen Analyst Says IBM Inconsistent in Services

Cowen & Co. analyst Louis R. Miscioscia said in a client note today that IBM has demonstrated "mixed performance" in its main segments for several quarters, including its services unit, the company’s primary revenue generator. He wants to see the services unit deliver more consistent results.

The analyst also said the company’s repositioning efforts, which focus on its services segment, have yet to deliver gains, and that IBM could face slowing growth in hardware and software sales.

He hit IBM with the euphemistic rating of "neutral," which is about as harsh an assessment as many analysts will deliver.

IBM went on a software-company buying binge this summer in an effort to give it more applications around which to wrap its professional-services offerings. Among IBM’s software acquisitions were enterprise-content management (ECM) vendor FileNet and security player ISS, bought for $1.6 billion and $1.3 billion, respectively.

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