IBM Loses $5 Billion

IBMJanuary 19, 1993

IBM announces a nearly $5 billion loss for fiscal year 1992. Several years of losses in the early 1990’s were the result of sweeping changes to the computer industry in the 1980’s that IBM was slow to recognize. Ironically, the biggest catalyst to this change was the rise of the personal computer. IBM helped create the most popular personal computing platform, but lost control of the platform to Microsoft and “IBM-compatible” clones of their original design. The monster they created in the PC industry nearly caused their own collapse. One indicator of this shift was the phrase “no one ever got fired for buying IBM” was replaced with “no one ever got fired for buying Microsoft”. IBM eventually reorganized its business, focused on its core strengths, and has recovered.