Cisco’s chief executive John Chambers has named a number of potential successors, according to Bloomberg, prompting speculation about his retirement from the role.
According to Chambers, the candidates for the top job at the maker of internet switches and routers include Gary Moore, the chief operating officer, Robert Lloyd, executive vice president of worldwide operations, Chuck Robbins, senior vice president of the Americas, and Edzard Overbeek, senior vice president of global services.
Chambers is now 63 years old and commentators expect him to announce his retirement in the next two to four years. He has been head of Cisco (San Jose, USA) since 1995, and presided over the company’s meteoric rise during the dotcom era, which briefly made it the most valuable company in the world.
“You begin to look at how these transitions occur, and the job of the board and myself is to make sure this next one goes really smooth,” he is quoted as saying by Bloomberg. “Assuming the board wants me to, and assuming the shareholders do, I’ll stay on as chairman after that.”
Chambers said he has been moving managers around the company to give them more responsibility, although reshuffles have also been aimed at stemming the loss of business to competitors including Juniper Networks (Sunnyvale, USA) and Hewlett-Packard (Palo Alto, USA).
Changes may also have been made in response to complaints from departing executives that Cisco’s management structure was too rigid and slowed decision-making.
Chambers also said that Moore would assume his responsibilities in the event of his suddenly being unable to continue in the role.