The Register: Cisco's Linux Project a Marriage of Gluttonous Execs
Jul 29, 2002, 16:00 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Thomas C. Greene)
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"Many rank-and-file Cisco employees are questioning the ethics
of a sweetheart deal in which senior Borg enjoying a leave of
absence have sold a skunk-works company, AYR Networks, back to the
Collective for a cool $113 million stock swap.
"Under the deal, Cisco common stock will be exchanged for all
shares and options of AYR Networks not already owned by Cisco.
Previously the company held a 17% stake in AYR, which is no
surprise, really, as AYR's CEO, Tom Grennan, was on leave from
Cisco while he went about the business of porting Linux to the
company's hardware, in particular the Catalyst 6K series.
"According to employees, Grennan and Company (i.e., numerous
other Borg engineers on leave) enjoyed office space, work space and
phones at Cisco's expense during the project. Were their Cisco
options still vested, people wonder? Couldn't the company have done
this in the traditional in-house manner and saved a bundle? One
employee remarked that the project could have been done by ten
people in a year for $10 million. The whole thing stinks of
favoritism, especially as, according to several Borg drones, the
Linux angle was already being pursued in-house..."