Not really that surprising. There would be a lot of time lost upfront trying to size and architect a data center.
But, the biggest problem would likely be IBM trying its own secret sauce BS. They don't have the underlying tech of Amazon. They don't have the underlying tech that GCS or Azure brings to the table either.
So, what's IBM's value add? IaaS using someone else's off-the-shelf tech is exactly what all their competitors also have. But, IBM has storage... that isn't that well integrated with VMware. They used to have X86 servers, so no real hardware value. They are pretty much out of the switch game.
The only things IBM has is their own value-add stuff if they want to make money here.
My guess: IBM is trying to build an IBM Cloud Manager with OpenStack environment using a lot of gear that has never been ran together in an OpenStack environment on any scale before.