IBM is looking to grow at double the rate of its software business than it did in its most recent quarter, with a stronger than expected performance in the cloud and the growing appetite for cloud-based services.
The world’s largest chipmaker’s cloud services unit, which includes cloud computing and big data products, grew at double-digit rates in the third quarter of this year, the company said Thursday.
“We continue to see significant growth in the business of cloud- and cloud-native software, as well as in new types of enterprise applications,” IBM said in its earnings report.
That growth was driven by a strong performance in cloud services.
“As we have grown our cloud services business, we have also seen an increase in cloud-to-cloud and cloud computing business segments,” the company wrote in its annual report.
The company also said that cloud-driven applications are expected to account for more than 40% of IBM’s revenue in 2021, up from 28% in 2016.
IBM said that it saw a 15% increase in its cloud-backed applications business in the fourth quarter.
It said that the rise in applications was driven primarily by growth in Azure, the cloud platform used by cloud computing services.
But it also said it sees opportunity for growth in other cloud services, such as its AI and big-data offerings.
“Our cloud-powered software is not just about data,” the chief executive officer of the company, J.P. Watson, wrote in a blog post on Thursday.
It added that the company was also “exploring the next frontier in software and cloud.”