American tech giant IBM is focusing on boosting its cloud offerings for the business market, and has made a series of deals aimed at accelerating the delivery of cloud services across a range of industries. Most recently the Silicon Valley pioneer purchased San Francisco-based online video streaming service provider Ustream. The value of the transaction is unconfirmed, but believed to be about $130 million.
Ustream offers cloud-based video streaming to about 80 million viewers per month, and has a client roster that includes NASA, Samsung, Facebook, and Nike. The firm will be integrated into IBM's newly formed IBM cloud video services unit, led by General Manager Braxton Jarratt. Jarratt is the former CEO of Clearleap, another cloud-based video service provider which IBM acquired in December.
IBM’s revenue dropped to $22.06 billion in the fourth quarter, from $24.11 billion a year earlier, Reuters reports. However, revenue from its cloud business was a bright spot, climbing 57% to $10.2 billion.
With the decline of the PC market, IBM has been shifting away from hardware by selling off low-margin businesses, such as low-end servers and semiconductors. As a framework for reinventing itself, the company put in place strategic initiatives focusing on high-margin products, including mobile security and big data in addition to cloud services.
“Our strategic imperatives continued strong performance, up 26 percent for the year”, said IBM Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Martin Schroeter. “This now represents 35 percent of IBM's revenue. Our profit and margin reflect our portfolio actions as we shift to higher value, as well as the level of investments we’re making to drive our transformation.”