Fortune Q&A with Rob Salvagno
Cisco’s head dealmaker talks to Fortune about Viptela, AppDynamics, Silicon, “Needle-Moving M&A and Investments”

Cisco Investments a member of Cohesity’s $90 Million Series C Funding

Datos IO
The Portfolio Development Team at Cisco Investments has been an invaluable resource for Datos IO.  They have been our trusted advisors thru every step of our journey – providing strategic guidance across multiple product and business units within Cisco including Cisco ACI, Cisco UCS, and Cisco HyperFlex.  The team has been great to work with as we scale our go-to-market with access to their global sales team and partner base. The Cisco Investments team is part of the Datos IO family, as invested in our success as we are! - Tarun Thakur, Co-Founder & CEO, Datos IO
Cisco Investments is a great ally, they function like a strategic Enterprise play with layers of folks that can help in multiple directions: intros to Cisco internal departments, their strategic Partners, as well as their remarkable customer base. I’m delighted to have them involved on Helpshift and consider them a strategic partner. - Kevin Grant, CRO at Helpshift
The Portfolio Development Team at Cisco Investments is our Strategy and GTM team rolled into one. We get access to a phenomenal tech platform to build upon, very specific mentoring on scaling, and access to a global sales force and customer base. Their team is as invested in our success as we are and that makes all the difference to a young start-up like us! - Vinod Muthukrishnan, Co-Founder & CEO
How We Help
Cisco Investments can leverage the enormous resources of Cisco to make a difference in a start-up company’s trajectory. From innovative investment vehicles to Cisco’s world-class engineering talent to Cisco’s unmatched network of Channel Programs, Channel Partners, and Customer events such as Cisco Live!, companies in the Cisco Investment portfolio can experience what “investment” means in the broadest sense possible.
Who We Are
We are an active investor with more than 40 investment professionals with deep market and technology expertise located in major geographies, including US, Canada, China, India, Israel, and Europe. Investments are a key part of our innovation strategy and they can vary in size and stage.

Our purpose is to support the next generation of companies with disruptive technology and business models. Over the last 20 years, Cisco Investments has invested in hundreds of companies across different segments.
Active Investor
Since 1993
40+ Investment
$2 Billion
Active Portfolio
100+ Direct
Active Investments
42+ Limited
Partner Positions
Where We Invest
The foundation of Cisco Investments’ $2B portfolio is built on investments in disruptive ideas that align with Cisco’s business today. But it’s not limited to today’s product suite. We also support those companies with ideas to shape the future of the global networking ecosystem. We have committed over $300M to invest in businesses that are focused on disruptive opportunities in the following areas over the next 2-3 years.
Big Data / Analytics
SaaS / Applications
Internet of Things
What's New
By Erin Griffin at Fortune Cisco is an acquisition machine, having done nearly 200 deals in its history. The company’s last minute acquisition of AppDynamics in January is arguably the most exciting deal of 2017. On Monday, the company announced its second deal of the year, paying $610 million acquisition of Viptela, a cloud-based SD-WAN company based in San Jose. (Fortune’s Jonathan Vanian has more about that deal here.) Over two interviews,
By Alex Konrad at Forbes Why would Cisco and NetApp join forces to invest millions into a young startup in the data management space called Datos IO? The answer lies in the cloud — and the two public tech companies racing to catch up to customers who want a mix of on-premise and cloud-based architectures. Datos IO is just three years old, with a data recovery product on the market since last June. 
By Alex Konrad at Forbes The next time Gainsight raises money from investors, it will likely be as the first billion-dollar startup in customer success. That looming distinction was set up on Tuesday when the company announced triple-digit growth, key new hires and a new $52 million investment that puts the company in knocking distance of unicorn status the next time it dips into investor pockets. CEO Nick Mehta announced the news at the company’s annual customer event in Oakland,
CiscoLive! enables customers, executives, and partners to share insights on emerging technologies and their potential to transform the future. There is no better venue for Cisco Investments (CI) to showcase how we are leveraging our investment capital than at CiscoLive!. However, we don’t use CiscoLive! just to show off the cool companies we invest in, we leverage the event to increase their exposure and make critical connections both inside and outside Cisco. Nowhere was the above statement more evident than at CiscoLive!
Author: Tomer Goldberg and Walter Hu As one of the most active investors in corporate venture capital, Cisco Investments maintains partnerships with aggressive and forward thinking VCs to broaden our view of technology and tap into markets and geographies we can’t normally reach. We helped to organize a start-up / entrepreneur pitch day event titled “Calling All Entrepreneurs” with Bull City Venture Partners (BCVP), in Durham,
Author: John Kim and Hitesh Saijpal Back in November 2016, we had the opportunity to introduce three emerging portfolio companies to the senior leadership of Dimension Data at Cisco Partner Summit. These three companies were Flashpoint and Verodin, two security startups, and Helpshift, a mobile customer support startup. That meeting was about raising awareness, but by the end of the afternoon, we had shared ideas for integrating solutions and collaborating on various joint customer opportunities.
For Startups in 2017 “Travel more” is always at the top of anyone’s wish list. And for startup leaders who need to combine a bit of work with their play, determining which networking events to attend is an essential step to increase their brand exposure and meet the industry movers and shakers who can help them do it. There are hundreds of global networking events for startup leaders to choose from.
Author: Tod Hays Startups need more than just funding to run a successful business. That’s why Cisco Investments works to provide relevant entrepreneur workshops like the one we held last month focusing on sales. We had Paula Hansen, VP of Sales in Cisco’s Global Enterprise business, as a presenter. And she’s one of the best in the business. Hansen drives business value and market differentiation and has an impressive track record of consistent profitable revenue growth and partnerships.
Cisco Live enables customers, executives, and partners to gather together in a venue that encourages interaction and making impactful connections. It provides a location and setting to share insights on emerging technologies and discuss the potential of each one to transform the future. Considering the above and the value in providing our portfolio companies with exposure to such an event, Cisco Investments will again host a targeted set of Cisco’s world wide investment portfolio at CiscoLive!
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