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Optical/IP

Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit

Earlier this month, Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) quietly reshuffled its Optical Networking Group (ONG).

So far, the only outwardly noticeable effect of the reorganization is the fact that Cisco has said it will close its Hagersten, Sweden, photonics unit (see Cisco Intends to Close Swedish Plant). [Ed. note: For any Swedish officials reading this, the company said it "intends" to close these facilities, so as not to cross your labor laws.]

Cisco maintains that its product roadmap and technology vision remain the same. It also says no other jobs or facilities will be affected besides the 60-plus employees it intends to eliminate in Sweden.

Cisco's ONG realignment is mostly cosmetic. The company can't say specifically where it has changed or intensified spending, focus, or personnel.

"As Cisco pursues market-leading positions in the multi-service switching platform (MSSP) and metro segments of the optical networking market, we will continue to focus on increasing our market share within the available market," writes a Cisco spokeperson in an email exchange with Light Reading. Does that clear things up? Thought so.

Cisco's intentions regarding its Swedish plant "didn't come as a surprise," according to Anders Lundberg, CEO of Lumentis AB. "Cisco probably has some very good reasons to consolidate and bring their optical people and products together back in the States. From that point of view, I personally don't think that this has anything to do with Sweden as a location."

Internally, Cisco has moved some things around. Its optical group is now made up of three main areas, with each area head reporting to Jayshree Ullal, the senior VP of Cisco's ONG.

The first group, ONG operations, will be led by former Fujitsu Network Communications Inc. (FNC) executive Ron Martin, who joined Cisco in May 2002 (see Fujitsu's Martin Joins Cisco).

The company's ONG product area will be led by three executives. Tom Fallon will lead the ONS 15300 series products. The main product in this group is the 15327, a small Sonet add/drop multiplexer (ADM) that replaces the discontinued ONS 15303 and ONS 15304, according to Cisco's Website.

Massimo Prati is in charge of the ONS 15500 series metro DWDM boxes and its 15600 multiservice provisioning platforms. Gary Baldwin will assume control of Cisco's ONS 15400 series products, which include the ONS 15454 Sonet ADM.

Finally, the division's product planning and photonics areas will be headed by Rajiv Ramaswami, who joined Cisco in September 2002. He was formerly VP for systems architecture at Nortel Networks Corp. (NYSE/Toronto: NT).

ONG was formerly split into four business units – Metropolitan, Optical Transport, Optical Management, and Photonics.

Cisco says it remains committed to ONG but won't say what its group or product revenues are, and it won't comment on how ONG performs financially, relative to the company's other product groups.

Cisco's overall headcount dropped to 35,566 in mid 2002, down about 10 percent from its year-ago total of 39,660.

— Phil Harvey, Senior Editor, Light Reading
www.lightreading.com Movers and shakers from more than 100 companies – including Cisco Systems – will be speaking at Lightspeed Europe. Check it out at Lightspeed Europe 02.

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capolite 12/4/2012 | 9:26:31 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit Expertise in Optical Networking is not a qualification. Jayshree can negotiate the political jungle, suck up and present the face that Cisco management wants. There are no other qualifications for the job.
red1969 12/4/2012 | 9:26:30 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit Not true, just look at how well both John Roth and Rich McGinn did. =)
belas_knap 12/4/2012 | 9:26:29 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit The article is essentially correct but unclear in terms of organiastion & products. A better view of the re-organisation would be that product development fall under 3 areas: DWDM, MSSP/SONET and Optical Ethernet. All the products still exist, as do the roadmaps, including the 15800 (former Pirelli) products. Martin & Ramaswami support the business across all three of 3 product development areas.
fiber_r_us 12/4/2012 | 9:26:24 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit If the 15808 is still going strong, why doesn't Cisco mention it in thier optical group press releases? Also, last time I talked to a VP of sales in Cisco, he thought the 15808 was already canceled! Another senior sales guy didn't know the product even existed! Doesn't give a customer a "warm fuzzy" that this product is going to stick around.
exciscoer 12/4/2012 | 9:26:22 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit "So far, the only outwardly noticeable effect of the reorganization is the fact that Cisco has said it will close its Hagersten, Sweden, photonics unit"

What a bunch of crap.
I guess the following facts didn't get reported:
1.) The group in Milan is no longer a business unit, it got demoted to a "technology center". What about the 10 or so people in Milan who lost their jobs in the product management area?
2.) What about all the people in Milan that were part of manufacturing that got released? This group did the Pilot production.
3.) The GM of the PBU Milan group has been moved to EMEA sales.
4.) What about all the TAS (talent assessment) actions, that in reality layed off a number of people in the Richardson, Texas office?

My estimate would be BEFORE the Stockholm office closing, the ex-Pirelli group had lost at a minumum of 100 people.

benson 12/4/2012 | 9:26:21 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit Folks;

I think it would be wise that some folks do a minimum of research before they his the send button:

1)Fiber_r_us: does this answer your question?

http://www.cisco.com/en/US/pro...

2) Ex-ciscoer. Obviously you are upset with Cisco, but you are not reporting accurately either:

"1.) The group in Milan is no longer a business unit, it got demoted to a "technology center". What about the 10 or so people in Milan who lost their jobs in the product management area?"

This has happened in all the engineering centers (Richardson, Ottawa, petaluma, etc.). They are no longer aligned with a BU, they are technology centers. One doesn't need PM in technology centers.


"2.) What about all the people in Milan that were part of manufacturing that got released? This group did the Pilot production."

As you probably know, this function was sold to Celestica in Vimercate, which is the industry trend everywhere. The fact of this action does not indicate a reduction in the support for the DWDM group in Milan. On the contrary, it is an act of survival in this brutal market.

Sure there has been change, but what would you want Cisco and other companies to do in this radically altered world? Just stand still and bleed money? At least they have maintained their commitment to the business they bought from Pirelli, despite all the changes.

Benson
fiber_r_us 12/4/2012 | 9:26:20 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit Benson said:

>I think it would be wise that some folks do a
>minimum of research before they his the send
> button:

>1)Fiber_r_us: does this answer your question?

> <link cisco's="" page="" product="" to="">

No, this doesn't answer my question! Cisco still has their Qeyton product there as well. Having a web page that describes the product obviously doesn't mean sh*t in terms of whether the product is going to be axed or not.
zhadum 12/4/2012 | 9:26:20 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit so, how many people still remain in milan?
benson 12/4/2012 | 9:26:19 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit Fiber_r_us;

Calm down!

To response to your further question: please note that the Qeyton product is NOT being cancelled: just the engineering center is being closed. In fact, it seems that the engineering for this product will be shifted to.....Milan.

In response to zhadum, I would guess that there are about 200 people in the Milan center, but I don't know the exact number.

Benson
zhadum 12/4/2012 | 9:26:17 PM
re: Cisco 'Realigns' Optical Unit benson:

thanks for your insights - you seem to be very knowledgeable about the happenings.

z
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