I am a very simple value investor. I buy great North American companies at fair or superior value, reinvesting dividends, and hold forever. Obviously I am an adherent of Benjamin Graham & Warren Buffett. Suffice it to say, I have done extremely well investing this way since the mid 2000s. I just wish I studied & practiced this earlier.
As such, IBM is a great company for investors like me. It's been around for 100 years. IBM consistently invents seminal hardware & software products. IBM has decent cash flow & balance sheets. IBM is well positioned in big data, analytic, social, and mobile computing...in the context of a private or public cloud, as well as obviously private data centers. IBM can basically deliver the entire stack, with expertise across the horizon of vertical industries.
IBM does indeed need some internal restructuring. I think IBM would benefit by being more bottom-up driven, paring down some layers of management. The company still has legions of world class engineers & scientists, but it should build a compelling culture for them...as opposed to being so strict on expenses...but that's my opinion.
Nevertheless, I think it is a fool's gambit to go against IBM. Similarly, so is going against Oracle, Microsoft, Intel, and Apple. These companies have deep pockets, make real money, and actually have some combination of IAAS & PAAS as well as SAAS for the cloud. Would you put your money here or in companies like these...or in Amazon, SalesForce, LinkedIn, Facebook, and, soon, Twitter?
I'll say this last thing: IBM had $100+ billion revenue and $15 billion profits in 2012. Food for thought.