Cisco Systems, Inc. is an American multinational corporation that designs and sells consumer electronics, networking and communications technology and services. Headquartered in San Jose, California, Cisco has more than 65,000 employees and annual revenue of US$36.11 billion as of 2009. The stock was added to the Dow Jones Industrial Average on June 8, 2009, and is also included in the S&P 500 Index the Russell 1000 Index, NASDAQ100 Index and the Russell 1000 Growth Stock Index.
Len Bosack and Sandy Lerner, a married couple who worked as computer operations staff members at Stanford University, later joined by Richard Troiano, founded Cisco Systems in 1984. Lerner moved on to direct computer services at Schlumberger, moving full time to Cisco in 1987. The name "Cisco" was derived from the city name, San Francisco, which is why the company's engineers insisted on using the lower case "cisco" in the early days. For Cisco's first product, Bosack adapted multiple-protocol router software originally written some years before by William Yeager, another Stanford employee who later joined Sun Microsystems. The company's first CEO was Bill Graves, who held the position from 1987 to 1988. In 1988, John Morgridge was appointed CEO, and was succeeded in 1995 by John Chambers.
While Cisco was not the first company to develop and sell a router, it was one of the first to sell commercially successful routers supporting multiple network protocols. As the Internet Protocol (IP) became widely adopted, the importance of multi-protocol routing declined. Today, Cisco's largest routers are primarily used to deliver IP packets.
In 1990, the company was listed on the Nasdaq stock exchange. Lerner was fired; as a result Bosack quit after receiving $200 million. Most of those profits were given to charities and the two later divorced.