Coming to Terms with Big Blue

Like a corporate Matterhorn, IBM casts a deep and daunting shadow across Western Europe's high technology. So powerful is IBM in Europe that it did more business there last year ($10.6 billion) than its nine largest rivals combined. But Big Blue's success has aroused European fears and suspicions. Nearly four years ago, the European Community brought the most ambitious antitrust suit in its 26-year history against the American firm. The key charge: IBM stifled competition by holding back technical information about its largest and most widely used family of computers, the System/370.

Last week, after months of negotiations, the two sides reached...

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