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Cisco's Chambers Bangs the Collaboration Drum

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Cisco (s csco) Chairman and CEO John Chambers delivered the opening address at this morning’s Cisco Financial Analyst Conference in San Jose, Calif., where he stressed collaboration applications, server virtualization, and video as key points of focus for his company — along with healthier growth.

As he did during Cisco’s quarterly earnings report at the end of August, Chambers described aggressively moving into “market adjancies,” where widespread demand is likely, as the company’s strategy going forward. “We don’t move into market adjancies randomly,” he said. “We don’t move if we don’t believe the market won’t be global.”

Chambers especially focused on the company’s growing portfolio of collaboration applications, including video- and telepresence-oriented ones. The company wants to improve its WebEx-based position in the video conferencing market through its acquisition of Tandberg, and is moving aggressively into the corporate email market, among others.

Chambers said the company’s divisions are targeting enterprise, commercial, service provider, and consumer customers. Quite a few of the demonstrations shown during his address appeared targeted at the SMB market. Some of the company’s recent offerings, such as WebEx Mail, have been just as focused on small- and medium-size businesses as on enterprises.

Chambers said he is aiming to return Cisco to 12-17 percent annual revenue growth, and that the analysts in attendance should hold him accountable for those numbers, which would be improvements over recent results. He also noted that the company’s core routing and switching operations are healthy, although he did not point to them as growth drivers.

He said he is focused on making smart acquisitions, and that Cisco typically succeeds when it buys companies, especially focusing on keeping existing talent in acquired companies. In addition, Chambers noted that he tries to focus the company on “innovation  combined with operational excellence,” although he maintained that the latter is most important.

The Cisco Financial Analyst Conference is going on all day today, and we will update this report as more announcements arrive.

6 Responses to “Cisco's Chambers Bangs the Collaboration Drum”

  1. Very interesting that Cisco is getting into email now. Looks like they are working their way up the stack, past their customers, to focusing on direct end-user relationships in services. Do they have the balls to take Skype off Silverlake’s hands?

    On the other hand, their datasheet for WebEx mail is terrible, and their site does not offer pricing. Not a good approach to SMB.

  2. TrendWatch

    Seamless anywhere/anytime collaboration likely be the next big productivity enabler for companies, individuals across the planet. Two of the three priorities point towards the productivity goal. Good for Cisco.