Cisco is selling off its Linksys home networking division to consumer networking vendor Belkin. Financial terms of the deal are not being disclosed at this time, and the deal is expected to close in March.
“We’re very excited about this announcement,” said Chet Pipkin, CEO of Belkin. “Belkin’s ultimate goal is to be the global leader in the connected home and wireless networking space and this acquisition is an important step to realizing that vision.”
The plan is for Belkin to retain the Linksys brand name and continue to support existing products and warranties.
“Linksys has long been an important member of the Cisco family and we are confident that we have found the best buyer in Belkin,” Hilton Romanski, Cisco’s VP of corporate business development, wrote in a blog post.
Cisco acquired Linksys for $500 million in March 2003. At the time of the acquisition, it was one of the top 10 deals in Cisco’s history. While the acquisition was initially considered to be a good move for Cisco, in recent years there has been much speculation about the possible divestiture of Linksys as Cisco pulled out of consumer businesses.
Among the consumer business that Cisco has exited or discontinued in recent years are the Flip digital camera and Umi home telepresence system.
Cisco’s big organizational change and focus away from consumer technologies was first publicly articulated back in May 2011 and has been repeated many times since by Cisco’s executive management.