News Release

Cisco Launches New Program to Help Small-and Medium-Sized Businesses Increase their Profitability and Gain a Competitive Edge by Utilizing the Power of E-Business Applications

Need for Cisco Internet Business Roadmap tool substantiated by study with IDC
Sep 24, 2001

SAN JOSE, Calif., Sept. 24, 2001 - Cisco Systems, Inc., the worldwide leader in networking for the Internet, today announced the results of its study with IDC highlighting how small-and medium-sized businesses (SMB) can increase their competitive advantage by employing the Internet as part of their overall business strategy. The study, entitled "The Many Roads to E-Business," will show that all SMBs are unique and have unique needs, and thus require online tools that will help them select the right Internet applications for their businesses and prioritize their e-Business investments. According to the study, a resource tool like Cisco Internet Business Roadmap will be invaluable for SMBs to quickly implement and realize maximum return on investment and profitability from e-Business applications.

Cisco released the results of the study in conjunction with a Webcast announcing the availability of the Cisco Internet Business Roadmap tool to the end-user community. This unique interactive online planning tool is designed to be a strategic resource helping SMBs and other growing companies compete and thrive in the Internet economy. Cisco's Ron Willis, vice president of worldwide commercial marketing, and Robyn Aber, senior director of strategic marketing, along with IDC's research director John Gantz, discussed the findings of the survey and highlighted how the Cisco Internet Business Roadmap tool helps growing businesses realize the effectiveness of Internet solutions.

"There are many paths an SMB can take to integrate the Internet into their core business functions and use it strategically to increase revenue, improve customer satisfaction and increase efficiency," said Gantz. "Our study shows that the right path for SMBs is one that assesses each company's needs and recommends a phased approach that prioritizes their eBusiness investments."

"SMBs understand that to remain competitive, improve the efficiency of their communications and workflow, and increase the return from their investment in technology, they must embrace the Internet in their business processes," said Willis. "Whereas large companies have the luxury of moving forward on multiple fronts, their small-and medium-business counterparts must become e-Businesses one step at a time. We have created this tool to help SMBs prioritize their investments and determine what steps they need to take to fully benefit from the potential of the Internet."

The Cisco Internet Business Roadmap program includes a comprehensive planning tool that assists growing businesses in generating a customized Internet solutions adoption strategy and a 3-to-36 month rollout plan that will help them gain a competitive edge and increase their profit margins. By completing a simple business and technology assessment questionnaire, SMBs can pinpoint Internet e-Business solutions designed to increase the efficiency of their business, improve employee productivity, and maximize the overall competitiveness of their business. With the Cisco Internet Business Roadmap tool, SMBs of any size can quickly and easily identify the combined network hardware, applications software, and services solutions that best fit the needs of their company.

The first step of the Cisco Internet Business Roadmap tool is to help users define their unique "Internet Identity" which is based upon their business needs. The second step is to complete a technical assessment that generates a customized Internet solutions adoption plan based upon the specific characteristics and profile of their business. Upon completion of these comprehensive steps, users will then receive assistance in developing their individualized Internet Roadmap of e-Business solutions and strategies, which will help bolster their competitive advantage and guide them to the proper resources, information, and training that would have the greatest impact on their business.

Extensive educational materials on key Internet business solutions, network blueprints and product information, technology white papers, business scenarios and references to representative application software providers are also available through the Cisco Internet Business Roadmap resource tool.

IDC's e-Business study is an addendum to IDC's previously released "eWorld 2001" study conducted earlier this year which determined the rate and pace of e-business adoption around the world. In that study, over 15,000 companies were interviewed in 27 countries, with the respondent pool comprised of both CIOs and business unit managers. More information can be found on this study by going to

To learn more, or start using the Cisco Internet Business Roadmap online resource tool, please visit