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Cisco and IBM Team to Empower Professionals with Office-Anywhere Access


Comdex 2001, LAS VEGAS (Booth L2505) - 12 Nov 2001: Providing simultaneous access to two global leaders in the mobile workforce revolution, Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO), and IBM today announced that they are teaming up to enable enterprises and public venues, such as hotels and convention centers, to set up secure, high-speed, business-class Internet access and other connectivity services. Driven by customer demand, the IBM and Cisco are enabling companies to provide professionals with the same level of office network access regardless of their location.

IBM Global Services will offer wireless network consulting, systems integration, site services and help desk, and Cisco will provide network infrastructure products and solutions through its Cisco Mobile Office program. The resulting end-to-end solution will help business professionals stay productive on the road or at home.

"Our customers find great value in the ability to work directly with both Cisco and IBM through one program," said Charlie Giancarlo, senior vice president and general manager, Technology Development, at Cisco Systems. "Enterprises can work together with Cisco and IBM to determine and implement the most effective end-to-end mobile solutions for their professionals on the road, at home and at work. Venue partners can work with us to provide leading wired and wireless capabilities to their guests, helping to add a new revenue stream, operational efficiencies and differentiate themselves."

The two companies have begun a global roll-out of the mobile office technology and services and a U.S. domestic roll-out of the home office solutions. Initial target markets include venues in the travel and hospitality industries, and enterprises in financial services, business services, government and health care among others.

"Now more than ever, companies need to provide effective resources for employees who are away from the office, both at home and on the road. For example, professionals continue to increase the amount of time they work from home," said Merle Sandler, senior analyst at IDC. "IDC estimates there are currently 25 million of these day extenders in the United States. More and more firms are realizing they can improve staff productivity by providing instant access to the office from wherever employees want to work."

Both Cisco and IBM have years of relevant experience providing remote Internet access to their internal workforces that can now be shared with and leveraged by customers. Cisco formally began its internal telework program more than eight years ago, and, in one three-year period, the company experienced a 300 percent return on investment.

"IBM first implemented wireless for our field service force twenty years ago and has realized tremendous cost savings," said Dean Douglas, general manager, wireless -e-business, IBM Global Services. "Our experience in using mobility to improve customer service and increase employee satisfaction can easily be applied to any company that wants to untether its teams for greater productivity. The Cisco/IBM alliance makes workforce mobilization faster and easier for customers."

The new program offers a variety of wired and wireless hardware and software options from Cisco, including DSL, cable, ISDN and Ethernet routers; virtual private networks (VPNs) and PIX® Firewall security hardware and software; Cisco Aironet® 350 Series of Wi-Fi (IEEE 802.11b) compliant wireless local area networking (LAN) products, including high-speed access points, bridges and client adapters; Cisco Long-Reach Ethernet technology for scalable deployment of high-speed Ethernet services over existing telephone wire; and the Cisco Building Broadband Services Manager (BBSM) software platform.

IBM will provide end-to-end networking services for mobile connectivity and public wireless LAN using Cisco products. IBM will work with the customer's choice in hardware or IBMThinkPads, Workpads, and eServers in a one-stop solution integrated by IBM Global Services. IBM ThinkPads feature innovative wireless, security and manageability features that deliver value to business customers.

Contact(s) information

Jan Walbridge
IBM Media Relations
(914) 766-4647
walbridge@us.ibm.com

Blair Christie
Cisco Systems Investor Relations
(408) 525-4856
blchrist@cisco.com

Julianne Whitelaw
Cisco Systems Media Contact
(831) 684-1174
julianne@3bpr.com

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