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Wheelings and Dealings: Cisco Eyes Acano Acquisition for Video-Delivery Strategy

November 25, 2015

Cisco recently announced its intent to acquire Acano Limited, a company that provides conferencing software and related infrastructure.

The acquisition is part of Cisco’s overall long-term video-delivery strategy. The company intends to provide “the best collaboration experience across every endpoint, every screen, every workspace, and to every user.”

Acano produces hardware and software that enables customers to connect video systems from different vendors within cloud and hybrid solutions. The company’s hardware includes audio bridging technology, video devices, and gateways. The company’s software includes video conferencing solutions.

According to Cisco, less than 10 percent of conference rooms support video communications. The company wants to change that in response to market forces it sees as demanding not only video communication via fixed endpoints, but also mobile video conferencing.

Specifically, Cisco views Acano as a company with the level of expertise and technology infrastructure that can bring two significant benefits to the table: interoperability and scalability.

On the interoperability side, customers are expecting collaboration solutions that work with in-house technology. Acano has already developed products that support a variety systems from disparate vendors.

Concerning scalability, there’s a demand for infrastructure that can handle a large, simultaneous community of users and support growth within an organization. Acano has already delivered collaboration solutions that handle large-scale requirements, including software that’s allowed customers to connect tens of thousands of users without sacrificing video or audio quality.

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“People, companies and organizations are more geographically dispersed than ever before, and collaboration is essential to helping teams increase productivity and drive growth,” said Rob Salvagno, vice president, Cisco Corporate Development. “Acano’s innovations make it easier for customers to collaborate when, where and how they want. Together, we will help our customers to extend collaboration to every room, every screen and every user.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay $700 million in cash and assumed equity awards for the acquisition. The company will also offer retention based incentives for Acano employees who decide to become part of the Cisco team.

The acquisition is expected to be complete by the close of the third quarter of fiscal 2016, barring any regulatory objections.

Edited by Kyle Piscioniere

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