Interesting question. Sam Palmisano thinks it’s because its people try to solve big problems. He says:
Over the past decade, we have increasingly sought to address the world’s biggest problems, driven by the idea of building a smarter planet. Without question, we do this in pursuit of large new profit opportunities. But it is more than that. It represents the fusion of IBM’s business and citizenship goals …. We hear again and again from schools, governments, nongovernmental organizations and communities that the thing they value most is the expertise of IBMers—more even than donations of cash or technology (although those are also welcome, and plentiful).
Read the full article here.