CTO Zorawar Biri Singh leaves As Internal Exodus Continues at Cisco

In another high level exit at Cisco, Indian American Zorawar Biri Singh is the latest to leave the networking giant in the midst of an internal exodus or restructuring.

In addition to being CTO, Singh was the senior vice president of cloud services and platforms — a crucial role, given that Cisco, like most vendors, considers the cloud crucial to its future success.

Unlike other departing executives, such as Senior Vice President Rob Soderbery, Singh was not part of Cisco’s old guard under former CEO John Chambers.

He and Chief Digital Officer Kevin Brandy arrived in mid-2015, hired from the outside by incoming CEO Chuck Robbins.

Since the beginning of this year, a few highly visible executives have announced their departures from Cisco. The list includes Soderbery, who ran Cisco’s enterprise business; Kelly Ahuja, senior vice president of the service provider business; and Pankaj Patel, chief development officer.

In addition, the quartet of Mario Mazzola, Prem Jain, Luca Cafiero, and Soni Jiandani have also resigned. They were responsible for three successful spin-ins, including Insieme, the startup that developed Cisco’s Application-Centric Infrastructure (ACI).

In August, Cisco announced layoffs of 5,500, part of a plan to shift priorities to areas such as security, the Internet of Things (IoT), and the cloud.

Cisco confirmed to CRN that Singh, Cisco’s CTO and senior vice president of Cloud Services and Platforms, is leaving due to the company’s evolving engineering strategy.

“Earlier this week, we announced to employees an updated alignment of our engineering teams. We believe these changes will help us simplify our development efforts and accelerate delivery of value for our customers. As a result of these changes, Zorawar Biri Singh will leave Cisco at the end of October,” a Cisco spokesperson wrote to CRN in an emailed statement.

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