Couple of quotes from John Chambers keynote during Cisco Live that I seemed to leap out at me:
“You are going to see a brutal, brutal consolidation of the IT industry where out of the top five players, only two or three of us will be meaningful in as quick as five years.”
“When we talk about the top five IT players, watch how disastrous the last 2.5 years have been where an HP and an IBM haven’t had revenue growth for two to three years.”
In sports and politics, this tactic is called “playing the underdog” where you attempt to drum up support by appearing to be the lesser team. People love to support the team coming from behind and hoping for surprise win.
Except that Cisco is still top dog in it’s market and attempting to grow into others.
Cisco pitching itself as a loser/coming from behind is not a tactic I’ve seen before. Cisco has always been the “best company with the best resellers and market leading products”.
When Chambers says “We know we have to change” we have some evidence he really means it.
Which is excellent news. Cisco is still the supplier of choice for the vast majority of companies and has the resources and talent to produce the best SDN networking solution. We haven’t seen it yet, but there is hope its coming.