Cisco boss attempts to nix Ciena takeover rumours

Ciena doesn't measure up, says CEO

Cisco CEO John Chambers moved to crush continuing speculation that his company has targetted optical telecoms equipment manufacturer Ciena for acquisition. Chambers said Ciena had a number of "serious shortfalls" which left the company wanting as a potential purchase. He cited common vision, long-term strategic importance, short-term post-purchase gains, a similar culture and the right chemistry among Cisco's buying criteria, few of which Ciena measures up to. Chambers said he looks for companies that can help Cisco move into new areas, now that it is focusing more on the telecoms market. He said his company largely purchases the expertise of engineers and others. Presumably it was just such expertise that led Cisco to team up with Ciena back in April to co-develop what it called the "next generation optical internetworks" and build overlay switching and routing technologies directly into optical networks. However, now it would seem Cisco is no longer interested. Perhaps had Ciena been granted the humungous AT&T supply contract, which its failure to win led to the massive shareholder panic, which in turn caused the proposed Ciena-Tellabs merger to collapse, Cisco would be taking a different position. But then, of course, it wouldn't have a hope of picking Ciena up. Or perhaps, Ciena's shares having risen 26 per cent since the Cisco takeover was first mooted, Cisco simply wants to talk them back down again to make it rather cheaper to bring Ciena's expertise on board. ® Click here for more stories

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