Handelsblatt Exclusive

Cisco Chief Talks Unicorns

Chuck Robbins, chief executive officer of Cisco Technologies Inc., speaks during a Bloomberg West television interview during the DreamForce Conference in San Francisco, California, U.S., on Wednesday, Sept. 16, 2015. Salesforce.com Inc. aims to cut the time its customers spend plugging data into its systems by weaving machine-learning technology from acquisition RelateIQ into its software for managing sales accounts. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Chuck Robbins
Cisco's new CEO, Chuck Robbins, is a company veteran who was formerly head of worldwide sales.
  • Why it matters

    Why it matters

    If Cisco can shift its business to become more agile and expand into the realm of the Internet of Things, it will be more successful in the future.

  • Facts


    • Chuck Robbins became Cisco’s new chief executive in 2015, replacing John Chambers.
    • Cisco is a global IT leader and the biggest maker of networking equipment, selling switching, routing and Wi-Fi equipment, services and software.
    • Cisco is buying Jasper Technologies for $1.4 billion, a startup technology company for the Internet of Things.
  • Audio


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Chuck Robbins, who six months ago became chief executive of Cisco, the global IT leader, talked to Handelsblatt about how business is changing.  He believes “the one that moves fastest, wins,” he said.

Since the interview took place, Cisco has announced its acquisition of Jasper Technologies, a startup famous for its work in technology for the Internet of Things, or networked physical objects.

Cisco makes networking equipment, and this purchase will help it move into the growing IoT trend by moving data and becoming more closely involved in related applications.


Handelsblatt: You have been in your position as a CEO for six months now. What’s new – have there been any surprises in your new job?

Chuck Robbins: It’s becoming more clear than ever to me how phenomenal the culture of this company is; the energy and creativity of our people is very inspiring. What didn’t surprise me though was how fast digitization moved and how much attention the topic gets right now. For a long time we only talked to customers from the IT department. Today, our customers are coming out of the lines of business. They are thinking about the consequences of technology and how technology fundamentally redefines their strategy and their business models going forward and it’s happening in a very rapid pace.

How is Germany doing?

Look at Berlin with all its startups; it became one center of digital revolution. In January we talked about that topic with chancellor Angela Merkel.

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