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Optical/IP

The Cisco Split

5:15 PM -- Remember Carl Icahn calling for Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT) to be split up?

Here's a thought from telecom consultant Tom Nolle of CIMI Corp. : A similar argument could be made for Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO).

Some of the ingredients are in place. Big company. Flatlined stock price -- actually a rainbow arch, but it's all the same to long-term investors. Dominant market position that's not getting rewarded.

If anyone else is thinking along those lines, it would be another reason for Chambers to sign on for another three to five years as CEO, even if that drove one of his lieutenants away. "You don't want to be floundering in a management sense when Wall Street is looking at you like a vulture," Nolle says.

One big difference between Cisco and Motorola is that Cisco isn't being described as "struggling," so I'd be surprised if any investors were planning to go Icahn on the company. If the stock price can't break from gravity this year, though, that could change.

— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading

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