Cisco has promoted two of its executives to the title of president, raising more questions about the future of the company’s CEO, John Chambers.
Gary Moore, who previously led the services division, is now president and chief operating officer, while his colleague Rob Lloyd, formerly executive vice-president of worldwide operations, has been appointed the president of development and sales.
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Cisco explained the rationale behind the changes as a way to “position the company for future growth and enable it to more quickly capture market transitions”, but many think it is also laying the foundation for Chambers to step down.
The CEO recently turned 63 and has admitted in interviews he is between two and four years away from retirement. He is the longest reigning CEO of the technology industry, having headed Cisco since 1995, so there is a lot of interest around who will be his successor.
Chambers did not want to talk about his impending departure today, however.
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"Cloud computing, mobility and internet of everything are the most network-centric computing transitions that have ever been, and present Cisco with an opportunity to lead the communications and IT industry for the next decade,” he said. “We're evolving our organisation and developing our leadership team to grasp this opportunity.”
The new roles take effect immediately and other promotions will filter through the company as a result.
Pankaj Patel, chief development officer, will continue in her role, but will now report to Lloyd. Chuck Robbins, head of sales for the Americas, will take Lloyd’s previous job. Wim Elfrink, chief globalisation officer, will focus on developing new markets.