Investors were rewarded by a Q4 earnings beat by Cisco. But that was little consolation for employees, as Cisco announced the layoff of 6,000 employees or 8% of their workforce. Since 2009, the company has cut roughly 20,000 jobs.
Revenues fell from $12.42 billion in 4Q13 to $12.36 billion this year versus a consensus of $12.15 billion, while Cisco’s pro-forma EPS hit $0.55 this quarter, an improvement over last year’s $0.52 and beating the consensus.
“We are executing well in a tough environment and delivered our best non-GAAP earnings per share quarter in our history,” said Cisco’s John Chambers. “Our strategy is sound, our financials are strong, and our market leadership is secure.”
Cisco’s full year 2014FY revenue fell 3% year-on-year to $47.1 billion, non-GAAP EPS for 2014FY was $2.06 and GAAP EPS was $1.49. Gross margins for the year fell from $29.44 billion in 2013FY to $27.78 billion in 2014FY as operating expenses remained stable but operating income dropped off.
GAAP income fell from $2.3 billion to $2.2 billion year-on-year, but this was still an EPS increase from $0.42 in 4Q13 to $0.43 this year thanks to its large stock buyback program. Cisco reported that it returned a record $13.3 billion to shareholders over the last fiscal year in the form of $0.72 in dividends and $9.5 billion in buybacks.
In the 1980’s and 1990’s, Cisco was the place to work. Through stock options, many employees became millionaires. Those days are long gone. Cisco is no longer the dream destination.