IBM posts sturdy quarterly revenues, but hardware sales are flat -

IBM has posted positive figures in its software and systems but its hardware revenues let the side down.

According to the company's latest quarterly results, IBM financially excelled at selling software and systems. Its hardware revenue for the past three months has been sluggish. The hardware results didn't help the company's overall revenue, which was flat for the quarter.

For the first quarter of 2012, IBM's net income was $3.1 billion compared with $2.9 billion in the first quarter of 2011, an increase of seven percent. Operating (non-GAAP) net income was $3.3 billion compared with $3.0 billion in the first quarter of 2011, an increase of nine percent.

However, it said total revenues for the first quarter of 2012 of $24.7 billion were flat  - up one percent, adjusting for currency - from the first quarter of 2011.    

When it came to its software offerings results were strong, with the company posting
$5.6 billion for the quarter from software, an increase of five percent. Its sales of IBM middleware -such as the company's WebSphere, Tivoli, Lotus and Rational products - also boosted the profits, making up $3.5 billion in sales, and accounting for an increase of seven percent.

Hardware sales hit $3.7 billion in revenues for the quarter. This was down seven percent from the last quarter. System z mainframe server products also failed to impress, dropping by 25 percent. Its revenue from Power systems and System x systems was flat from a year earlier.

IBM's Global Technology Services arm made the business $10 billion in revenue, which was a two percent increase from the year before. However its Global Business Services arm saw a two percent drop to $4.6 billion.

Over in the Americas’ first-quarter revenues were $10.5 billion, an increase of one percent from the 2011 period. However,   revenues from Europe/Middle East/Africa were $7.6 billion, down two percent.

Asia-Pacific revenues boosted the company's takings with an increased four percent to $6.1 billion, while OEM revenues were $509 million, down 17 percent compared with the first quarter in 2011.

IBM also announced that it was selling its Point-of-Sale business to Toshiba, which would be shelling out a cool $850 million in its biggest ever acquisition.

The pair said in a statement that the purchase would enable Toshiba to provide hardware, software and integrated in-store offerings to its customers worldwide.  

Last year this wing of IBM saw revenues of about $1.15 billion. It also has around 1,000 employees globally.

The deal is expected to close in the late stage of the second quarter.  

While the transaction is being completed, the companies will continue to operate independently.

After the transaction closes, IBM will continue to provide maintenance services to clients under a multi-year services agreement. Retail Store Solutions customer service and product availability will continue as usual as the operations are integrated.