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Key Cisco executives to step down alongside John Chambers

Cisco’s COO and sales chief are both understood to be leaving as Chuck Robbins takes over as CEO from John Chambers in July

Cisco’s chief operating officer, Gary Moore, and president of development and sales, Rob Lloyd, will both leave the networking supplier on 25 July 2015 when current CEO John Chambers steps down.

Rob Lloyd, in particular, had been seen as a clear front-runner to replace Chambers in the role of CEO following his much-anticipated departure from the firm.

However, Cisco instead elected to elevate its senior vice president of worldwide operations, Chuck Robbins, to the role, when Chambers announced, on 4 May 2015, he was to step down.

Lloyd joined Cisco in 1994 as general manager of its Canadian business, and served in a number of high-profile roles around the business, including a five-year stint as Europe, Middle-East and Africa president. 

Moore joined Cisco in 2001 from networking consulting systems provider Netigy, having also worked at information technology company Electronic Data Systems.

Robbins has already set out plans to introduce a flatter leadership structure at Cisco, which is expected to be announced at the upcoming Cisco Live! event in San Diego, California, where Chambers is expected to pass on leadership.

“We’re going to focus on aligning our resources against their best priorities for the company. I really want to focus secondly on clarity and simplification of our messages, and that’s internal and external,” said Robbins on a recent analyst earnings call.

Robbins, who in his previous role was in overall charge of Cisco’s sales and channel strategy, is not expected to make sweeping changes to the supplier’s product line-up.

Read more about Cisco's CEO transition

  • Cisco makes top executive change at a fascinating time for the supplier, writes analyst Shamus McGillicuddy.
  • IT legend John Chambers passes the Cisco CEO torch to sales executive Chuck Robbins, but what does it mean for CIOs?

However, as Computer Weekly's sister site reported, he will have to contend with the ongoing shift in the networking landscape towards more open, software-defined networks.

Expanding on the appointment of Robbins, Chambers commented: “Chuck knows every Cisco segment, technology area and geography. He will move the company forward with the speed required to capitalise on the opportunities in front of us.

“He is a champion of the Cisco culture and has an incredible ability to inspire, energise and connect with employees, partners, customers and global leaders.” 

Read more on Software-defined networking (SDN)