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August 03, 2012

Cisco News - Cisco Board Gets New Members

By Brittany Walters-Bearden, TMCnet Contributor

The Cisco board’s roster will now show a total of fourteen people now that it has been joined by Salesforce CEO, Marc Benioff (News - Alert), and Enduring Hydro CEO, Kristin Johnson. These additions to the board became effective on August 1. 

Even though Salesforce and Cisco (News - Alert) have been business partners for a while, the appointment to become a board member has met some criticism and a lot of analysis.

During this year, Cisco has lost a little bit of its edge, even with purchasing major software makers. The company has turned to working on building cloud computing; it is speculated that the addition of the Salesforce CEO to the board – who is all about cloud computing – will help Cisco improve its own cloud computing efforts.

As for adding Kristin Johnson to the list of members, the motives behind that is a little easier to see. Kristin Johnson is a green energy advocate. She is also an inventor and entrepreneur; Johnson holds over 45 U.S. patents, and has a lot to bring to the table. She can aid Cisco in cleaning up the data centers that cloud computing runs in.

Though Marc Benioff and Kristin Johnson will be good additions to Cisco’s board, many wonder at the timing of adding them concurrently. Marc Benioff’s company was the lowest company listed in a report, of which companies use the best alternative and green energy sources. Krisitn Johnson’s company is a green energy company. 

The two organizations clearly do not meet eye-to-eye when it comes to using green energy, but maybe Cisco was trying to balance the two out. 

Hopefully, the two CEOs differences do not become a disability when it comes to advising Cisco on cloud computing and green energy. The two must combine their efforts in helping Cisco on the cloud computing front if they are to compete with other companies in the same software category.

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Edited by Braden Becker

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