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Cisco Cuts Pay of CEO Chambers, Other Execs

John Chambers saw his compensation cut by 22 percent after the company missed financial targets in its fiscal year 2014.

Cisco Chambers

Cisco Systems CEO John Chambers and other top executives saw their pay cut during the company's latest fiscal year, the result of the giant networking vendor missing key financial targets.

That said, none of the executives is in danger of going broke. According to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) Sept. 30, Chambers' compensation was almost $16.5 million, a cut from the $21 million he earned in fiscal year 2013. His base salary remained at $1.1 million, with the rest of the income coming from stock awards and incentive pay, according to the SEC filing.

Other listed executives— Executive Vice President and CFO Frank Calderoni, President and COO Gary Moore, and President of Development and Sales Robert Lloyd—also saw their compensation reduced, though their pay ranged from $9.3 million to almost $11.2 million.

Cisco's revenues during the latest fiscal year came in at $47.1 billion, a 3 percent drop from the previous year. Chambers, who has been CEO since 1995, is overseeing the company's transformation from a networking gear vendor to an IT solutions and services provider with a broad reach throughout the data center and the cloud.

During a conference call Aug. 13 with analysts and journalists to talk about the company's fiscal year financial numbers, Chambers noted that the year had "many big wins and several challenges. Our fiscal year began with the number of external headwinds including the federal government shutdown and the possibility of a U.S. default combined with significant slowdown in emerging markets." Still, he said, he was pleased with the end results, and noted that Cisco began its transition as far back as 2011.

"We rolled out our transformational plan with two principal objectives," Chambers said. "First, drive innovation, speed, agility and efficiencies in our business. And second, to transform the company to move from selling boxes to selling first architectures, then solutions and now outcomes. Operationally, we've done a very good job against those objectives, which has afforded us flexibility today and how we go after market opportunities."

Chambers is expected to retire by the end of fiscal year 2016, and some top executives, such as Lloyd, are seen as possible successors.