Partnership Reality Check: Vodafone Needs IBM Today and IBM Needs Vodafone Tomorrow

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By Dan Shey | 2Q 2019 | IN-5384


Why IBM Chose Vodafone


IBM’s 2018 financial results were positive, beating analyst expectations and returning to revenue growth after nearly seven years of revenue declines. It should be pointed out that a big portion of the revenue growth came from a replacement cycle in mainframes, even though CFO James Kavanaugh has stated that cloud services without mainframe grew nearly 20%. Kavanaugh also said in an interview with CNBC that, with the Red Had acquisition, IBM is well-positioned to address the second phase of cloud migration. In the first phase, cloud adoption was more cost-driven and workload simplistic, which was the reason for public cloud growth; in the second phase, cloud migration will be more strategic and distributed to address workloads across multiple clouds. IBM feels it will be particularly well-positioned during the second cloud migration phase.


These financial results and IBM’s cloud services portfolio may suggest that IBM did not really need to partner. However, the competitive environment around IBM was rapidly changing in ways that could potentially slo…

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