Few companies have been as successful at reinventing themselves and their businesses over the years as IBM(IBM), which got its start as International Business Machines in the first half of the 20th century, selling early computing machines, eventually expanding out to include mainframes, personal computers and more. It is also a major research organization, holding the record for more U.S. patents generated by a business for the last 26 years, including such innovations as the ATM machine, floppy disk, UPC barcode, magnetic stripe reader and more.

Today IBM develops computer hardware and software, offers business consulting services, cloud computing services and more. Its subsidiaries include PwC Consulting, The Weather Company and Red Hat, a maker of open-source software.

IBM currently employs more than 350,000 people across 170 countries and its revenue for 2018 was $79.5 billion.

Rationale

The most direct way to gain exposure to IBM is to buy its listed shares. But there are a number of good reasons for investors to reconsider that approach. As a multinational conglomerate in the large and competitive information technology industry, IBM must continually innovate in order to stay ahead of the ever-evolving market for computer technology and services. What’s more, IBM has gone through a number of different evolutions in recent decades – most notably a pivot to consulting services in the 2000s – in order to remain competitive. It has done well so far, but longevity in such a competitive space is never guaranteed.

However, rather than buying IBM shares themselves, investors interested in gaining exposure to the information technology sector might consider buying funds that provide exposure to IBM and its competitors. After all, the return drivers that will benefit IBM might also benefit other similar companies in information technology, computing, and business consulting. As investment management is gradually moving to the construction of portfolios using ETFs and mutual funds in addition to single stocks, investors would do well to consider gain exposure to firms like IBM through these types of funds.

Investing in IBM

A search on Magnifi suggests that investors can gain access to IBM via a number of different funds and ETFs, including those shown below.

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