Cisco Systems to Acquire Latitude Communications
Adds Rich-media Conferencing Capability to Industry Leading IP Communications Portfolio
SAN JOSE, Calif., November 12, 2003 - Cisco Systems, Inc., today announced a definitive agreement to acquire publicly-held Latitude Communications, Inc. (NASDAQ: LATD) of Santa Clara, Calif. Latitude is a leading provider of enterprise conferencing products with its MeetingPlace audio and web conferencing solution. The acquisition advances Cisco's leadership in IP communications by adding rich-media conferencing, which combines voice, video and web conferencing, to Cisco's Architecture for Voice, Video and Integrated Data (AVVID) product portfolio.
Under the terms of the agreement, Cisco will pay $3.95 in cash for each outstanding share of Latitude, or approximately $80 million in the aggregate, and will convert outstanding Latitude options to Cisco options. The acquisition of Latitude is expected to close in the second quarter of Cisco's fiscal year 2004. In connection with the acquisition, Cisco expects a nominal one-time charge for purchased in-process research and development expenses. The acquisition is subject to Latitude stockholder approval, various standard closing conditions, and regulatory approvals.
"Bringing a leader in enterprise rich-media conferencing together with the leader in IP voice communications makes perfect sense," said Don Proctor, Vice President and General Manager, Cisco's Voice Technology Group. "This acquisition will enable Cisco to accelerate delivery of intelligent multimedia conferencing solutions which take advantage of dynamic network informationsuch as presence and location data about network usersto improve workplace productivity. Basing these products on industry standards, such as SIP, H.323 and XML, ensures solutions that seamlessly integrate voice and video conferencing, as well as emerging technologies such as instant messaging and data collaboration."
"We believe that Cisco's industry leadership position, strong customer focus, and commitment to technological excellence will provide the ideal combination to bring the benefits of rich-media conferencing to more customers than ever before," said Rick McConnell, chief executive officer, Latitude Communications. "Latitude is enthusiastically entering this new relationship and welcomes the opportunity to contribute to Cisco's strategic direction."
Like the private branch exchange (PBX) market, the customer contact market, and the voice messaging market, the enterprise conferencing market is in transition. Business customers are shifting from "off-network" services to "on-network" solutions behind the firewall for greater security and significant cost-savings. As use of "on-network" conferencing grows, enterprises are looking to combine voice, video and data on the converged IP network. Rich-media conferencing provides that experience, cost-effectively and securely.
Latitude MeetingPlace currently integrates with leading enterprise desktop scheduling applications such as IBM/Lotus Notes and Microsoft Outlook, as well as with data collaboration and instant messaging solutions such as IBM/Lotus Sametime. Latitude MeetingPlace also offers significant integration with Cisco CallManager, enabling users to schedule, attend, and manage meetings using the display on Cisco IP phones, adding new capabilities to the more than 2.3 million Cisco IP phones sold to date. Cisco and Latitude also intend to integrate MeetingPlace with Cisco IP/VC for video conferencing capability.
Upon closing of the acquisition, Latitude's business will become part of Cisco's Voice Technology Group, reporting to Don Proctor, Vice President and General Manager, and its products will be sold under the Cisco brand through Cisco sales channels.
Latitude Communications, Inc., was founded in 1993 and held its Initial Public Offering (IPO) in 1999. The company has 183 employees and more than 400 customers worldwide. For the nine months ended September 30, 2003, it reported revenues of $26M.
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