Sunday, February 15, 2009

What is Cisco planning to do with all that cash? (CSCO)

As a follow-up to Wednesday's posts "Firm's Cash Holdings and the Cross-Section of Equity Returns" (CSCO) " and "Shoot! Cisco Q2 Sales $9.1B, $.32 EPS Beat, Shares Rising" (link list), MarketWatch had this on Saturday:

Wall Street speculating on giant's potential acquisition, expansion targets

Its sales and earnings may be getting ripped apart by the recession, but Cisco Systems Inc. is sitting on a hoard of cash so huge that analysts can't help but speculate about what the tech giant might do with the money.

Cisco now has roughly $30 billion in cash and equivalents, the largest cache among high-tech companies and second only to oil behemoth Exxon Mobil among S&P 500 companies. Other technology powerhouses are also sitting on growing cash piles and may be looking to invest in new businesses, or to return some of that money to shareholders in the form of share buybacks or dividends. See full story about tech-sector cash hoards.

For Cisco, the question is what new businesses it should look at? The San Jose, Calif.-based company already dominates the networking-gear market and is a major player in other arenas....MORE