* CEO says no interest in device acquisition
* Expects multiple, small deals ahead
(Updates with CEO comments)
NEW YORK Feb 25 Cisco Systems Inc (CSCO.O)
Chief Executive John Chambers said the network equipment
maker's future acquisitions would likely be small and not
involve consumer devices.
"Within the consumer side of the house, I have no interest
in a device," Chambers told a Goldman Sachs technology
conference on Wednesday. He was asked whether Cisco's expansion
in the consumer space could lead to an acquisition of a device
Chambers' remarks would appear to knock down speculation
that has swirled in the market periodically from blogs and
traders of a possible acquisition of BlackBerry maker Research
in Motion Ltd RIM.TO RIMM.O.
Cisco already owns cable set-top box maker Scientific
Atlanta as well as Web conferencing company WebEx.
Mergers and acquisitions have been a key part of Cisco's
growth from a manufacturer of routers and switches to the
comprehensive network and software maker it is today.
Chambers said there would be "multiple acquisitions, but
most of them will be small."
He also said most people seem to expect the economic
downturn to last "well into 2010", but that he is more
optimistic and sees business conditions beginning to recover
around the end of 2009.
Cisco shares were down 35 cents or 2.3 percent at $14.64 in
afternoon trade, while the Nasdaq composite .IXIC fell about
2 percent. RIM shares were up 1 percent at $40.85 on Nasdaq.
(Reporting by Ritsuko Ando; Editing by Derek Caney)