Thursday, January 24, 2013

Linksys Will Live On Under Belkin Ownership

When Cisco CEO John Chambers talked about the possibility of dialing back more of Cisco's consumer technology portfolio and focusing on the company's wide ranging corporate software and technology services many, including myself, wondered what might come the Linksys brand. Today we are one step closer to that answer as Belkin has announced and agreement to purchase Cisco’s entire Home Networking Business Unit.

"We're very excited about this announcement. Our two organizations share many core beliefs – we have similar beginnings and share a passion for meeting the real needs of our customers through the strengths of an entrepreneurial culture," Belkin CEO Chet Pipkin said in a statement announcing the deal.

Cisco, which bought Linksys for $500 million back in 2003 when Chambers was on a push to diversify to consumer lines from the company's core B2B service, has been slowly whittling away at those diversity projects. First dumping Flip and now Linksys.

According to their statement Belkin intends to maintain the Linksys brand and will continue to offer support for Linksys products. All valid warranties will be honored by Belkin for current and future Linksys products. After the transaction closes, Belkin will account for approximately 30 percent of the U.S. retail home and small business networking market.

The specifics on the terms of the transaction are undisclosed. The transaction is subject to various standard closing conditions and is expected to close in March 2013.

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