Cisco Confirms Layoffs; Cuts 2 Percent Of Workforce

"We routinely review our business to determine where we need to align investment based on growth opportunities," said a Cisco spokesperson in a prepared statement. "As we focus on both of these efforts, we are performing a focused set of limited restructurings that will collectively impact approximately 2 percent of our global employee population. These actions, subject to local legal requirements, including consultation where required, are part of a continuous process of simplifying the company, as well as assessing the economic environment in certain parts of the world."

The statement did not specify which Cisco business units are affected.

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According to Bloomberg, 2 percent of Cisco's workforce represents approximately 1,300 positions. But blogger Brad Reese reported that the company "is laying off 1,600 WAAS [Wide Area Application Services] engineers and sales team members." Reese received messages earlier today from two separate sources. One of them said, "Not sure if you know, but today Cisco dissolved its entire WAAS sales team. Painful."

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Another said, "Inside Cisco knowledge, just laid off all Cisco WAAS engineers and sales people. Up to 1,600 will be laid off today. I am one of those affected therefore, like to remain anonymous."

Last, year, Cisco cut its head count by approximately 6,500, mostly through layoffs and early retirement packages, as part of an effort to trim $1 billion in expenses.

UPDATE: Cisco Wednesday issued the following statement from Rob Soderbery, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco's Enterprise Networking Group, in response to reports that the WAAS team has been gutted:

"I want to correct some of the speculation in the market regarding our plan for WAAS. Cisco is fully committed to the WAAS business. We have made some changes in our go-to-market approach, which has impacted a relatively small number of people and generated a lot of noise. Our engineering teams remain fully engaged and working against our long term roadmap to drive application awareness into the network. To better leverage the capabilities of the teams, I have integrated the WAAS teams directly into our access router group. That allows us to leverage a large set of developers and to focus on our Cloud Intelligent Network architecture, Cloud Connect Solutions and the L4-7 technologies which support the cloud transition."