IBM not keen on deals above $1.5bn: CFO

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BOSTON: International Business Machines Corp has no interest in pursuing large acquisitions, preferring to focus on targets worth $200 million to $1.5 billion, a top executive said.

"We are not looking at big acquisitions, nor do we want to communicate that we are looking at big acquisitions," Chief Financial Officer Loughridge said at a JPMorgan investment conference in Boston.

IBM has said it expects to spend about $20 billion on acquisitions between 2010 and 2015 as part of its strategy to reach at least $20 per share in adjusted earnings for 2015.

It has been targeting software companies that fit and augment businesses it already owns, with a particular focus on data analytics, security and e-commerce.

The company has repeatedly said it was not on the prowl for large buys, as it was in 2009, for example, when IBM found itself outbid by Oracle Corp over Sun Microsystems.

Oracle swooped in after talks between IBM and Sun Microsystems had stalled and outbid IBM by just 10 cents a share, paying a total of $5.6 billion in cash.

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