Chuck Robbins began his first full day as Cisco Systems' new CEO by adding two people to his executive team and reiterating his view on the importance of the network in an increasingly digital world.
In a post on the company blog July 27, Robbins—who is Cisco's first new CEO in two decades, replacing John Chambers—announced the appointments of Biri Singh as the company's senior vice president and CTO of platforms and solutions and Kevin Bandy as senior vice president and chief digital officer.
Singh most recently was a venture partner at Khosla Ventures, after having spent time at IBM, Nortel Networks and Hewlett-Packard, where he was general manager of HP's cloud business. He also has led various startups, including application delivery company Pivia—which was bought by F5 Networks—and JRG, a software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendor. Bandy comes to Cisco from Salesforce.com, where he was senior vice president for enterprise transformation. He also has worked with Accenture and IBM, as well as Rhea Springs, a consultancy.
Singh's role will be to anticipate "customer and industry transitions, and define the technology strategy to stay ahead of the market," the CEO wrote. Bandy "will work with teams across Cisco to design a comprehensive vision for us, and our customers, to capture the true value of digitization by leveraging Cisco's broad portfolio of solutions and services," he wrote.
Since being named Chambers' successor in May, Robbins has rapidly remade the executive team, with a number of company veterans like Padmasree Warrior and Rob Lloyd leaving and new executives coming via internal promotions or outside hires.
In his blog post, Robbins outlined the challenges companies face in the "digital transition that every country, city and company is undergoing, and we intend to be the most strategic partner for our customers during each stage of this transition."
"In the digital world, data—and the insights from that data—will be the most strategic asset," he said. "It will be distributed across every part of our customers' organizations and ecosystems. The ability to secure, aggregate, automate, and draw insights from the data—with speed—will ultimately define success. … Only Cisco, and only the network, can deliver the highly secure, distributed, and intelligent infrastructure and solutions required in today's highly dynamic digital world."