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CNN recently reported that Cisco systems as so far spent $680,000 lobbying members of congress this year. This makes sense considering Cisco acquires so many companies that most of us cannot keep up. The first thing that comes into my mind is that Cisco doesn’t want to get so big that it suffers the same fate as Microsoft is an accused of being a monopoly. However, according to the list of topics that Cisco supposedly lobbied on, the “monopoly” topic wasn’t one of them (but then, how could it be?)
In 2007 alone, Cisco Systems has acquired 10 companies. And the year is not over yet.
My question is this – Can Cisco successfully integrate all of these companies and their technologies into sucessfull products? Typically, a very high number of acquisitions are financially unsuccessful. Will Cisco really be able to go from #1 Router & Switch maker to
- #1 cable set top box maker
- #1 DVR maker
- #1 video conferencing maker (home and business)
- #1 security vendor
- #1 toaster vendor
(okay, I threw that last one in there) But still, you start to wonder if they will stop the acquisitions one day and can they really become the top vendor, or one of the top vendors, in all the technology categories that they play in …?Here is the list of Cisco’s 2007 acquisitions from the Wikipedia
- September 28, Latigent a developer of Call Center software.
- September 18, Cognio a provider of wireless analysis and management.
- May 22, BroadWare Technologies, provides software that enables web-based monitoring, management, recording and storage of audio and video that can be accessed anywhere by authorized users.
- March 28, SpansLogic, develops processors that improve packet processing speeds across the network.
- March 15, WebEx, makes applications that enable online group meetings and secure instant messaging.
- March 13, NeoPath, a provider of high-performance and highly scalable file storage management solutions.
- March 5, Utah Networks, acquired selected technology assets of Utah Networks, the operator of the social networking site Tribe.net.
- February 21, Reactivity, XML gateway provider enabling customers to deploy, secure, and accelerate XML and web services.
- February 8, Five Across, software developer of ‘social networking’ technologies that allows businesses to create ‘MySpace-like’ communities on their websites.
- January 4, Ironport, a developer of security software that scans e-mail for viruses and spam.
David Davis, CCIE
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