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IBM's CFO Loughridge to retire by year-end

Mark Loughridge, IBM Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, speaks at the Reuters Global Technology Summit New York May 19, 2009
Mark Loughridge, IBM Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, speaks at the Reuters Global Technology Summit New York May 19, 2009

By Nicola Leske and Nadia Damouni

(Reuters) - IBM's Chief Financial Officer Mark Loughridge is retiring at the end of the year after almost a decade on the job as the technology services provider struggles with declining revenue and weakness in emerging markets.

Loughridge, who joined International Business Machines in 1977 as a development engineer, will be succeeded by Martin Schroeter, who was previously IBM's head of global finance, the company said in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday.

In December, Loughridge will turn 60, IBM's traditional retirement age, a spokesman said.

Schroeter, 49, will take on his new role January 1, the company said.

However, three sources with knowledge of discussions about management said originally Loughridge was set to leave in 2015 but that a number of factors had led to his earlier departure.

In addition, James Kavanaugh, vice president and controller at IBM, may take on a new role as well, the sources said.

Both Schroeter and Kavanaugh gave presentations at a two-day strategic board meeting in September. The meeting often allows executives to showcase future talent at IBM, two of the sources said.

Historically when IBM appointed a new CEO, the CFO has remained in that role for a few years, giving way to a new, younger CFO who will last the rest of the CEO's tenure, one of the sources explained. Virginia (Ginni) Rometty was appointed CEO in October 2011.

Two sources also said the moves may be an indication that IBM is rethinking its 2015 roadmap.

The sources asked to remain unnamed because the discussions were not public.

IBM aims to reach earnings per share of at least $20 in 2015; this year it is targeting at least $16.25.

The Armonk, New York-based company declined to comment but a spokesman pointed to a statement from Schroeter saying that he looked forward to working to deliver the 2015 roadmap.

(Reporting by Nicola Leske; editing by Andrew Hay, David Gregorio and Phil Berlowitz)

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