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Three Meraki founders quit Cisco

"Led engineering for enterprise cloud networking business unit (switching, wireless, and firewalls) as it grew from $120M / year to $500M / year in 24 months following the acquisition."

New York City:   Wed, 2/4/15 - 11:59pm    View comments
 

2/5/2015 - 2:48pm:

Meraki Founders Say Bye-Bye To Cisco
 

Cisco CEO John Chambers
 

Last November 12th during Cisco's Q1'FY15 earnings conference call, Cisco CEO John Chambers gushed:
 

"Meraki continued out there with another outstanding quarter growing at 86%...
 

Rob SoderberyHeck just last week, Cisco's Senior Vice President for Enterprise Products and Solutions, Rob Soderbery, blogged:
 

"When Cisco acquired Meraki a couple of years ago, people thought of it as a company that supplied wireless networks to midsized businesses. But it's never been just about Wi-Fi or small and medium-sized businesses.

"It's about making any network of any scale manageable via any browser. Motel 6 supports 11,000 locations and 70,000 guest rooms via our cloud managed networking solution."
 

So imagine my surprise today when Cisco whistleblower, Corporate Renegade, revealed in a comment that Meraki's cofounders Sanjit Biswas, John Bicket and Hans Robertson recently quit Cisco.
 

The three founders of Meraki have quit Cisco
 

Hans Robertson John Bicket Sanjit Biswas
 

Corporate Renegade further revealed in his comment today:

"2. Shocking departure of the Meraki founders:

"After less than a year Cisco acquired Meraki, all of their founders cashed out and abruptly left Cisco quite recently. The gossip I heard (from reliable and credible) sources is that Cisco wanted them move from SF to SJC (their offices are in SF) but they did NOT want to integrate Meraki with Soderbey's Enterprise Networking Group. A big rift took place and as a protest they all left Cisco! Shocking Brad has not reported on this juicy piece of gossip."

What's surprising when considering Renegade's comment above, is the Meraki CEO letter to employees about Cisco's acquisition of Meraki for $1.2 billion:

"Finally, Cisco recognized we built a culture and environment in San Francisco that has helped us recruit and retain phenomenal talent across departments. As a result, they'd like us to be a new 'Cloud Networking Group', based out of SF, fun office, free food and all."

Interestingly, John Bicket revealed in his LinkedIn Profile:

"Led engineering for enterprise cloud networking business unit (switching, wireless, and firewalls) as it grew from $120M / year to $500M / year in 24 months following the acquisition."

Note: Personally, I believe the following employee Glassdoor reviews on Meraki offer more "color" as to what has happened to Meraki under Cisco's ownership:
 

"Sometimes it is difficult to navigate through Cisco, our parent company. Keep it up, don't let anyone change what you guys have going on over there. You have an opportunity to be special, please TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT!"

 

"It's corporate now - the founders are gone, no startup feel. Overachievement is becoming impossible. Try to maintain the startup feel as much as possible. Although I know it's out of your control, your tenured reps will leave like they are already starting to."

 

"The Founders did not stay true to their core value - they said they would not sell out and they did and now, it's a corporate company. Now they have grown the recruiting team to try to get anyone in as the seasoned pros here have left to get out of corporate life and back into start up life. The environment has always been toxic. They don't do a good job at hiring and so they don't retain good talent. Numerous complaints from clients about our product going out on them. The standard isn't what it used to be. It's already hard as it is having a low OTE. In fact, they offer the lowest OTE I've ever seen from any similar bay area companies. Founders are pretty much out of the picture so it's in corporate's hands now, so no use giving advice."

 

"The sales organization had meteoric growth over the past years with quotas that were set low to make over achievement the standard. Now the founders are leaving and Cisco is now putting a lot of pressure on management to over reach. The honeymoon is over and now territories are being split rapidly with larger quotas."

 

"High school cliques, Honeymoon is over. Avoid at all costs. You do not want to work here. Territories quickly being divided. etc."

 

Related documents:

Corporate Renegade's comment

Cloud Managed Networking is the "Easy Button" for the Network

Letter to employees from Meraki CEO, Sanjit Biswas

Related story:

Meraki Founders Say Bye-Bye To Cisco
 


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