Cisco restructuring process places Latin America at new level - exec

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The restructuring process that Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO) has been going through over the past months has placed Latin America at a new level of importance to the company, Cisco's business development manager for Latin America, Pedro Suarez, told BNamericas.

The company used to divide its business areas into four theaters: US and Canada, Europe, emerging markets, and Asia-Pacific. "From a management leadership point of view, we have been working under the umbrella of senior VP emerging markets, including from West Africa to Eastern Europe and South Asia," he said.

With the geographic reorganization, Latin America joins the US and Canada in the creation of an Americas region.

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"It is quite an exciting opportunity for the region" as Cisco is sending a clear message to the market that it believes the IT business has sufficiently grown and evolved, according to the executive. Also, in his opinion the creation of the new region will be a way to integrate business and collaboration between Cisco's executives in the US and Latin America.

The restructuring also brings benefits to Latin America by placing it closer to Cisco's headquarters in US, Suarez said, enabling the region to participate in the same forums and in the same time zone.


Cisco has announced a partnership with Citrix Systems to provide desktop virtualization. "We are now a certified partner for the newest Citrix capabilities," Suarez said.

As a first result of the alliance agreement, Cisco will deliver a new release of Cisco Wide Area Application Services (WAAS), optimized for Citrix XenDesktop and Citrix HDX technology, before year-end.

According to the executive, Cisco understands the need for higher investments in virtualization services and data centers solutions. The company also wants to leverage its collaboration portfolio.

Commenting on virtualization, Suarez listed mobility and the need to expand data storage as the motors driving this trend. He believes there is overall very limited capability in today's technology to support secure, reliable and scalable cloud computing deployments for a company.

Also, the proliferation of mobile devices, like tablets, with a range of operating systems being used for mobile computing, is pushing virtualization.

"We know there's a lot of demand for virtualization in the market; over the next two or three years 40% of the installed base of PCs will be most probably refreshed with a virtual desktop type of approach," Suarez said.

As sales business development manager to Latin America, one of his priorities concerning the region this year was precisely strengthening the offer of virtualized solutions. "We are working hard in enabling partners in the countries, in the field, to be able to sell, deploy and support these products."