Cisco CEO Replacement Plan For John Chambers Becomes More Evident


Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO) is not getting a new Chief Executive Officer yet, but the timeline may finally be closer. CEO John Chambers told Bloomberg in an interview today that he and the company have identified some of the senior leaders at the company who could succeed him. His timeline was put in the two-year to four-year range. This is important because the 63-year old Chambers has been considered a possible retirement candidate in the not so distant future for a year or more now.

Chambers has been CEO since 1995 and there are as many as ten different potential candidates according to the interview. Three who were mentioned (beyond an immediate ';if-needed' replacement of COO Gary Moore) are Robert Lloyd, Chuck Robbins, and Edzard Overbeek. What is interesting is that Chambers indicated that if the board of directors and shareholders want him to that he would likely hold on to the Chairman title even after he retires from the role of Chief Executive Officer.

We would take this one of two ways. Either Chambers is starting his bowing-out process by finally talking about it, or he is simply going to retire in two to four years. He has already overhauled the operations a year ago and Chambers talked up giving his officers more and more responsibility.

Today's news shows is having little direct impact. Shares are down 0.3% at $18.74 against a 52-week range of $14.93 to $21.30.


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