18 de July de 2018

Top Research Reports for AT&T, Home Depot & Cisco

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

The Zacks Research Daily presents the best research output of our analyst team. Today’s Research Daily features new research reports on 16 major stocks, including ATT (T), Home Depot (HD) and Cisco (CSCO). These research reports have been hand-picked from the roughly 70 reports published by our analyst team today.

You can see all of today’s research reports here

Buy-ranked ATT’s shares have decreased -9.4% in the last three months, underperforming the Zacks Wireless National industry’s fall of -1.8%. ATT is gearing up to launch the first standards-based mobile 5G services in multiple U.S. markets by the end of 2018.

The Zacks analyst thinks the company will benefit from its probable merger with Time Warner. The deal is likely to reshape the industry dynamics, creating a new media behemoth. It will enable the power packed combination of ATT’s data and Time Warner’s content to create new kinds of online videos and sell targeted advertisements.

ATT intends to acquire AlienVault to enhance its line of cybersecurity products designed for small and medium-sized businesses. It also inked an agreement to acquire AppNexus to augment its foothold in the digital ad sales market. ATT’s wireline division is facing losses in access lines due to competitive pressure from voice-over-Internet protocol service providers.

(You can read the full research report on ATT here ).

Shares of Buy-ranked Home Depot have gained +30.7% over the last year, outperforming the Zacks Retail Building Products industry’s +27.8% increase. The Zacks analyst thinks that this performance is attributed to its five-year long trend of beating earnings estimates, which continued in first-quarter fiscal 2018.

Further, both the top and bottom line improved year over year in the first quarter. The company is gaining from strength in core business as well as relentless focus on affording innovative products, boosting interconnected customer experience and driving productivity. Steady housing market recovery and strong customer demand also remain tailwinds.

Going into the fiscal second quarter, the company witnessed strength in all lines of business in the first few weeks of May. Consequently, it provided an optimistic view for fiscal 2018. However, top line lagged estimates mainly due to colder-than-normal weather that led to softness in the spring season categories, particularly garden. This softness also resulted in a decline in comparable transactions.

(You can read the full research report on Home Depot here ).

Buy-ranked Cisco‘s shares have outperformed the Zacks Networking industry in the past year, gaining +34.9% vs. +32.6%. Strong contribution from acquisitions, security, Infrastructure Platforms and applications drove are positives.

The Zacks analyst thinks Cisco’s expanding footprint in the rapidly growing security market presents significant growth opportunity. Strengthening collaboration portfolio which now includes Webex Teams and AI-based Accompany bodes well. Partnerships with Telenor, Apple, IBM, Microsoft and Google Cloud are positive. Divestiture of a portion of Cisco’s NDS video assets is likely to mitigate the sluggishness witnessed in other product segment.

However, weakness in switching and routing is a headwind. Ongoing transition to subscription-based model will continue to hurt the top line. Further, dampening service provider business and intense competition from peers are other concerns.

(You can read the full research report on Cisco here ).

Other noteworthy reports we are featuring today include Boston Scientific (BSX), Ford (F) and Mondelez (MDLZ).

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Note: Sheraz Mian heads the Zacks Equity Research department and is a well-regarded expert of aggregate earnings. He is frequently quoted in the print and electronic media and publishes the weekly Earnings Trends and Earnings Preview reports. If you want an email notification each time Sheraz publishes a new article, please click here

Today’s Must Read

ATT (T) Rides on 5G Service Launch and Strategic Takeovers

Home Depot’s (HD) Focus on Pro Customers to Bolster Growth

Cisco (CSCO) Rides on Security Products Strategic Deals

Featured Reports

J.B. Hunt (JBHT) Aided by Higher Shipping Volumes, Costs Ail

The Zacks analyst likes the robust shipping demand, which is aiding the company. Higher freight rates are also favorable. However, high driver wages are pushing up operating expenses.

Apache’s (APA) Alpine High Discovery to Boost Returns

Per the Zacks analyst, Apache’s sharp focus on Alpine High Play along with its ambitious plans to enrich the region’s midstream prowess is expected to generate top-tier returns for the company.

Loan Growth, Higher Rates Support KeyCorp (KEY) Revenues

Per the Zacks analyst, KeyCorp is well poised for revenue growth driven by continued loan growth and higher interest rates.

New Testing Hub in China, Partnerships to Aid Toyota (TM)

Per the Zacks analyst, plans to open a battery testing hub in China and tie-ups with other companies to develop electric vehicle technologies will help Toyota gain from the rising demand for EVs.

Focus on Cloud-Based Software Boosts Veeva Systems (VEEV)

Per the Zacks analyst, cloud-based applications like Veeva Vault, Veeva CRM, Veeva Network and Veeva OpenData has provided Veeva Systems with a competitive edge in the MedTech industry.

Boyd Gaming (BYD) Banks on Expansion, High Debt a Concern

Per the Zacks analysts, focus on strengthening current operations will drive growth.

Strong Oncology Portfolio Boost Novartis (NVS), Sandoz Lags

Per the Zacks analyst, Novartis’ strong oncology portfolio should maintain momentum as it combats generic competition for key drugs.

New Upgrades

Green Assets and North America Focus Aids NRG Yield (NYLD)

The Zacks analyst believes NRG Yield’s long-lived renewable assets and North America focus lowers currency risks and offers growth opportunity via acquisition of natural gas and thermal assets.

AXIS Capital (AXS) Continues to Gain from Higher Premiums

Per the Zacks analyst, improving premiums, driven by premium growth across segments, continue to boost AXIS Capital’s top line, thereby resulting in the company’s overall growth.

Higher Loans Fee Income Support Commerce Bancshares (CBSH)

Per the Zacks analyst, loan growth, higher interest rates and fee income growth should aid Commerce Bancshares’ revenues. Easing of stringent banking regulations and tax cuts will provide support.

New Downgrades

Lotus Recall, Dull Pacer Sales Hurt Boston Scientific (BSX)

The Zacks analyst is concerned about declining worldwide pacemaker sales hurting Boston Scientific’s CRM business. Also, the fate of Lotus valve recall issue seems to be in limbo for some more time.

Ford (F) Shifts to Low Gear on Recall Issues Tariff Threat

Per the Zacks analyst, Ford’s plan to absorb additional tariffs on U.S.-manufactured automobiles to China is likely to hurt its margins. Also, recall related issues are adding to its expenses.

Escalating Freight Commodity Costs Worry Mondelez (MDLZ)

Per the Zacks analyst, Mondelez’s gross margin in the first quarter was dented by higher commodity and freight costs. Such expenses remain a pressure for the company, being a threat to gross margin.

Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
 
ATT Inc. (T) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Mondelez International, Inc. (MDLZ) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
The Home Depot, Inc. (HD) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Ford Motor Company (F) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
Boston Scientific Corporation (BSX) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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Article source: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/top-research-reports-t-home-182006308.html

AT&T Expands Edge Solutions Portfolio by Offering Cisco ENCS …

DALLAS, July 17, 2018 /PRNewswire/ – Building upon its leadership in edge-to-edge virtualized capabilities, ATT* now offers the Cisco 5000 Series Enterprise Network Compute System (ENCS) as part of its Edge Solutions portfolio to help businesses increase their networking agility.

Unlike traditional network hardware that performs a single function, Cisco ENCS does more with virtual network functions – including routing, switching, firewall, and WAN optimization. And it can be dynamically upgraded as needs evolve or change. It is a fully virtualized platform designed for the Cisco Enterprise Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) architecture.

Cisco ENCS with ATT will provide these functions on a single piece of ATT-managed Cisco hardware with Cisco software. This NFV solution is available as an option from ATT for businesses that prefer a Cisco-based infrastructure. Multiple configurations and a library of virtual network functions give customers in nearly 90 countries and territories1 the flexibility they need in their networking strategy.

“No business has the same network needs, and our expanded relationship with Cisco is helping us support more businesses that need managed services,” said Josh Goodell, vice president, Edge Solutions, ATT Business. “As companies continue to transform their businesses to digital models, having more choices becomes more important than ever.”

“Modern networks oxygenate today’s business,” said Sachin Gupta, senior vice president of Enterprise Networking, Cisco.  “Companies like ATT understand the power of combining secure, high-performance hardware and software designed specifically for network function virtualization. Cisco ENCS delivers an unprecedented level of agility and enables the modern enterprise to deploy network services in minutes, rather than days and weeks, with confidence.”

Learn more at https://www.business.att.com/solutions/Portfolio/network-services/.

*About ATT Communications

We help family, friends and neighbors connect in meaningful ways every day. From the first phone call 140+ years ago to mobile video streaming, we innovate to improve lives. We have the nation’s largest and most reliable network and the nation’s best network for video streaming.** We’re building FirstNet just for first responders and creating next-generation mobile 5G. With DIRECTV and DIRECTV NOW, we deliver entertainment people love to talk about. Our smart, highly secure solutions serve over 3 million global businesses – nearly all of the Fortune 1000. And worldwide, our spirit of service drives employees to give back to their communities.

ATT Communications is part of ATT Inc. (NYSE:T). Learn more at att.com/CommunicationsNews.

ATT products and services are provided or offered by subsidiaries and affiliates of ATT Inc. under the ATT brand and not by ATT Inc. Additional information about ATT products and services is available at about.att.com. Follow our news on Twitter at @ATT, on Facebook at facebook.com/att and on YouTube at youtube.com/att.

© 2018 ATT Intellectual Property. All rights reserved. ATT, the Globe logo and other marks are trademarks and service marks of ATT Intellectual Property and/or ATT affiliated companies. All other marks contained herein are the property of their respective owners.

**Coverage not available everywhere. Based on overall coverage in U.S. licensed/roaming areas. Reliability based on voice and data performance from independent 3rd party data.

1 Subject to conditions

SOURCE ATT Inc.

Related Links

http://www.att.com

Article source: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/att-expands-edge-solutions-portfolio-by-offering-cisco-encs-with-att-300681614.html

If not now, when? Taking your IT career to the next level

techgenix logo

TechGenix reaches millions of IT Professionals every month, and has set the standard for providing free technical content through its growing family of websites, empowering them with the answers and tools that are needed to set up, configure, maintain and enhance their networks.

Article source: http://techgenix.com/it-career-next-level/

Seidman: Civic groups unite over zoning concerns – Sarasota Herald

Sarasota neighborhood associations want more public input into a city plan that has resulted in hodgepodge development

It’s not often you can get two Sarasota organizations to agree on something, much less four that collectively represent just about every neighborhood in the city.

Yet that’s precisely what happened recently when four local civic groups came together to work collaboratively toward preserving Sarasota’s quality of life in the face of increasing growth and development pressures.

The Coalition of City Neighborhood Associations (CCNA, representing 32 neighborhoods); the Downtown Sarasota Condominium Association (DSCA, representing 30 condos and more than 6,000 residents); and STOP! and SHOUT, both grassroots groups formed to address specific zoning and public input issues, have communally endorsed a half dozen principles intended to give residents greater influence in creating a more “liveable, walkable, development compatible” city. The new group, called United for a Livable Sarasota (ULS), hopes that by joining forces, it can wield enough power to get someone at City Hall to take up the cause.

“We’re hoping that by coming together, we can demonstrate it’s not just one faction,” said Kate Lowman of STOP!, which formed in 2016 to address zoning regulations and citizen input in the downtown development process. “It’s all these people concerned about the same things, and we hope we can leverage this representation into something meaningful.”

Each group had been working on overlapping areas of concern since a sizeable uptick in major construction began about four years ago. That construction became especially visible with the appearance of The Vue, at the corner of U.S. 41 and Gulfstream Avenue, which drew a great deal of community protest. The 141-condominium and 253-room hotel project was permitted through a process known as “administrative approval,” which does not require citizen input or a City Commission vote.

That’s just one of the unforeseen consequences, activists say, of the 2001 Downtown Master Plan 2020, which was aimed at making Sarasota a more vibrant, pedestrian-friendly city. The plan, designed by New Urbanism guru Andres Duany, was intended to encourage people to walk, live, work, shop and dine downtown by, among other things, bringing buildings closer to the street and each other.

But after its adoption, developers challenged the plan. They had numerous objections, one of which was that its onerous approval process gave them little incentive to invest. The city, hoping to avoid costly litigation, adopted changes, including a policy of “administrative approval” in the downtown core and along the bayfront. That meant citizens could no longer weigh in on new development in advance and could only initiate a costly appeal process if they objected within 10 days of a project’s approval.

The new building guidelines were also frequently in conflict with existing structures designed under completely different requirements. With no feedback from residents, that has resulted in large new developments built directly on lot lines with zero setbacks next to, for example, vintage one-story homes with 20-foot setbacks.

“People have started to see the consequences of what was implemented without the nuances and the reality of a built-out city,” said Lowman. “It may make sense on Main Street, but in a more residential area, the same concept of urban living doesn’t wash. Is this what was really intended?”

Those are just two of the factors that helped ULS unite in favor of immediate changes to city zoning codes — even in advance of the reveal of a new form-based zoning code that has been in the works for more than five years and is now postponed to August. Among other ULS concerns are safety (falling debris) and sidewalk and road closures at construction sites, the width of sidewalks, and the potential for administrative approval to be expanded to other areas.

A CCNA survey found the top issues for its members were administrative approval, sidewalks and traffic. Comments at town hall meetings organized by STOP! and by members of SHOUT (residents of South Palm Avenue) at City Commission meetings, identified similar priorities. A June 2017 DSCA survey of downtown residents revealed “lack of public input was No. 1,” said Melvin Sykes, chair of the zoning code committee for the DSCA.

“A lot of residents felt they didn’t have a say in what was going on,” Sykes said.

Ron Collins, a member of the CCNA executive committee, said every hand went up at a recent meeting of 30 neighborhood representatives when someone asked how many had given input to Urban Design Studio, the entity charged with creating the new form-based code. “And how many of you felt you were heard?” Collins asked. Not a single hand went up.

“There is wide consensus that what is being put in the code is not what people want,” Lowman said.

Several months ago, Sykes and Collins, who were constantly running into members of the other groups at community workshops and City Commission meetings, reached out to their leaders. Everyone agreed to a sit-down, and after several sessions, they identified six common concerns, released recently in a press statement. These “principles” were subsequently endorsed by the memberships of each organization.

The current administrative approval process for downtown does not provide enough opportunity for early public input. 
The practice of administrative approval of site plans should not be expanded to areas outside of downtown. 
City construction site procedures do not adequately protect pedestrians and adjoining properties from falling debris and other safety hazards. 
City policies do not incentivize developers to minimize street and sidewalk closure periods. 
Setbacks should be increased for downtown zones and sidewalk width reviewed for the entire city. 
Development projects should be compatible with existing setbacks and streetscapes of the surrounding community. 

The next step, ULS leaders say, is to find someone in city government who is willing not only to initiate immediate action on the issues that have already clearly been identified as problematic, but to consider greater resident input before finalization of the new code.

“We need some leadership,” said Lowman. “We’re trying to lead from the rear. We’ve gotten to a place where someone at the city has to take the initiative.”

Contact columnist Carrie Seidman at 941-361-4834 or carrie.seidman@heraldtribune.com. Follow her on Twitter @CarrieSeidman and Facebook at facebook.com/cseidman.

 

Article source: http://www.heraldtribune.com/news/20180717/seidman-civic-groups-unite-over-zoning-concerns

Avi Networks Enhances Intent-Based Application Services on Cisco …

SANTA CLARA, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Avi
Networks
, the leader in Intent-Based Application Services, today
announced Avi Vantage Platform version 18.1, with enhanced automation,
application intelligence, and scaling to meet the fast-growing demands
of modern application delivery. Following recent
funding by Cisco Investments
and last year’s inclusion in Cisco’s
global price list, Avi unveiled a range of enhanced integrations with
Cisco products including Cisco ACI, AppDynamics, and Tetration to enable
flexible, programmable, and highly automated application networking
services.

Key features and enhancements in the latest version include:

  • Complete L2-L7 Automation through the integration of Avi
    Vantage with Cisco ACI, improving the performance and automation
    required for applications on modern programmable networks
  • Improved Application Insights through integrations with Cisco
    AppDynamics and Tetration Platform to enhance Avi’s own application
    performance monitoring capabilities.

Avi reinforces Cisco’s intent-based networking approach

Avi’s software architecture, which separates the centralized control
plane (Avi Controller) from the distributed data plane (Avi Services
Engines), enables deployment across heterogeneous infrastructure
including public clouds, private clouds, and on-premises data centers.
Avi Vantage version 18.1 includes ‘service-mode’ integration with Cisco
ACI, the software-defined networking (SDN) solution from Cisco. Using a
new and unique approach, the Avi Controller is directly integrated with
the Cisco APIC controller using REST APIs, without the need for device
packages to deploy application services. The model simplifies the
placement of application services such as load balancing on Cisco ACI
networks and automates moves, additions, or updates based on policy.

“Customers are adopting Cisco ACI for data center automation and
application agility,” said Ranga Rao, Senior Director, Product
Management Solutions Engineering, Data Center Networking, Cisco. “With
well-designed integrations with Cisco solutions, Avi Networks is helping
drive the same agility and automation for load balancing, web
application firewalls, and application analytics for our joint
customers. Our shared vision of intelligent automation and multi-cloud
consistency helps customers deploy applications quickly and seamlessly
and manage them with ease.”

“Our strategic relationship with Cisco and integrated solutions deliver
fully automated L2-L7 networks for our joint customers,” said Murali
Basavaiah, VP of Engineering and Founder at Avi Networks. “Customers are
moving away from legacy application delivery architectures that force
manual processes based on input parameters instead of outcomes. Avi’s
intent-based architecture, platform capabilities, and integration with
Cisco products are delivering immediate benefits to customers looking
for agile, enterprise-grade application delivery, performance
monitoring, and application security.”

The new release available now, also makes Avi’s L4-L7 application
networking insights available to Cisco AppDynamics and Cisco Tetration
Platform for consolidated views of application and network performance.

About Avi Networks

Avi Networks delivers Intent-Based Application Services by automating
intelligence and elasticity across any cloud. The Avi Vantage Platform
provides a Software Load Balancer, Intelligent Web Application Firewall
(iWAF) and Elastic Service Mesh to ensure a fast, scalable, and secure
application experience. Customers enjoy 90% faster provisioning and 50%
lower total cost of ownership. Avi is backed by leading investors
including Cisco Investments, DAG

Ventures, Greylock Partners, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and Menlo
Ventures.

Article source: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180717005314/en/Avi-Networks-Enhances-Intent-Based-Application-Services-Cisco

Black Press Media journalists win big at Canadian community …

Black Press Media is pleased to congratulate all of our winners in the 2018 Canadian Community Newspaper Awards.

Winners in the general excellence category include the Eagle Valley News, the Hope Standard, the Tofino-Ucluelet Westerly News, the Lake Cowichan Gazette, the Salmon Arm Observer, the Sooke News Mirror, and the Victoria News.

Victoria News reporter Kristyn Anthony earned first place for Best News Story in her circulation category, for “National CAF lawsuit picks up steam,” while Christine van Reeuwyk of the Oak Bay News picked up second place for “His name was Joe,” and Mission Record editor Kevin Mills earned third for “You want me to let them go?” in their own circulation categories.

For Best Feature Story in their circulation category, Fernie Free Press editor Phil McLachlan came in first place for “58 years into her life, Marsha Bradcoe found herself,” while Nelson Star reporter Tyler Harper earned second for “Call it intuition: Norm Pratt’s gift for finding people.”

Our series on women’s experiences of sexual harassment in the workplace earned first place in the Multimedia Feature category, while second place went to Keri Coles of the Oak Bay News for “Twists of fate across generations brings Pattinson memories home.”

To see all of this year’s CCNA winners, click here.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Article source: https://www.ominecaexpress.com/business/black-press-media-journalists-win-big-at-canadian-community-newspaper-awards/

Cisco’s Solid Portfolio to Thwart Amazon’s Networking Plans

Shares of Cisco CSCO declined 4% to close at $41.78, on Jul 13, following rumors that Amazon Web Services (“AWS”) intends to market network switches to business customers.

However, we believe the fears are overblown considering Cisco’s dominant market share, domain expertise and expanding clientele.

Per a report, Amazon’s aggressive pricing strategy will not only position it well to foray into the market but also aid it in gaining competitive edge over the companies in the space, including Cisco, Arista Networks ANET, Juniper JNPR, among others. Specifically, the report highlights that one of the two people “who has been briefed about the project” estimated that Amazon could price white-box switches around 70-80% lesser than Cisco.

Amazon and Cisco both refrained from making any comments on the issue. Even Arista and Juniper kept quiet regarding the rumored development.

The proposal, if it materializes, will position AWS as the foremost cloud company to sell commercial white-box switches to the enterprise market. White-box switches combined with open-source software provide a customized edge over other traditional networking hardware providers. The move will enable AWS customers to run data centers by deploying fewer network engineers, consequently, reducing costs.

Notably, the company has returned 36.9% in the past year outperforming the industry’s rally of 34.5%. The outperformance can primarily be attributed to its expanding footprint in the rapidly growing security market among other initiatives in emerging technologies.

Amazon’s Strategy to Offer Hybrid Cloud Solutions

The proposal, if it materializes will place AWS to be the first foremost cloud company to sell commercial white-box switches to the enterprise market. White-box switches combined with open-source software provide a customized edge over other traditional networking hardware providers. The move will enable AWS customers to run data centers by deploying fewer network engineers, consequently, reducing costs.

We note that Amazon has been using white-box switches in its own data centers. Per the report, “the person with direct knowledge of the project” affirmed that AWS is projected to introduce the networking switches to business customers within the next 18 months.

Additionally, a few white-box manufacturers, including the likes of Delta Networks, Edgecore Networks and Celestica are aiding AWS in this regard.

Should Cisco Investors Worry?

The company’s Infrastructure Platforms comprise Switching, NGN routing, Wireless and Data Center solutions, which accounted 57.5% of total third-quarter fiscal 2018 revenues. Revenues inched up 2% from the year-ago quarter to $7.16 billion.

The year-over-year increase can primarily be attributed to robust growth across switching, wireless and data center business. Moreover, increase in switching revenues has witnessed strong growth across both campus and data center.

Further, per IDC estimates, Cisco dominates the global Ethernet switch market. The company had a market share of 53.4%inthe first quarter of calendar 2018, registering a 7.6% year-over-year growthin ethernet switching revenues.

The other players in the report comprising Huawei, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Arista Networks, and Juniper have a market share of 8.1%, 6.0%, 6.5%, and 3.7%, respectively. The fact that the closest contenders in the space have a combined market share of less than 25%, asserts that Cisco’s switching business holds promise. Consequently, the investors should not panic regarding the company’s future in this space

Conclusion

AWS’ move to come up with its own networking switches remains a concern. The new switches are likely to disturb the pricing parameter. Cisco as a result might be hurt by reduced margins.

However, given the scale of its operations in the space, Cisco seems to be a strong contender. The investors must not give up on the company following this announcement. Moreover, Cisco has a diversified portfolio. Strength witnessed in company’s Security and Applications segments are expected to boost top-line, going ahead.

The broad portfolio and expanding customer base add to the resilience of Cisco’s business model.

Zacks Rank Key Pick

Cisco carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). A better-ranked stock in the broader technology sector is Micron MU, sporting a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

The projected long-term earnings growth rate for Micron is 8.2%.

Wall Street’s Next Amazon

Zacks EVP Kevin Matras believes this familiar stock has only just begun its climb to become one of the greatest investments of all time. It’s a once-in-a-generation opportunity to invest in pure genius.

Click for details

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Cisco Systems, Inc. (CSCO) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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Arista Networks, Inc. (ANET) : Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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Article source: https://finance.yahoo.com/news/cisco-apos-solid-portfolio-thwart-143302169.html

Cisco’s made DNA Center open enough to out-run Amazon

As we reported yesterday, the idea that Amazon might make its own switches into some kind of a captive gateway between on-premises data centres and the AWS cloud sent shivers through investors in traditional networking vendors – and none so much as Cisco.

Another way of looking at the same announcement is that AWS is entering a market that Cisco has already marked as “end of life”, since in the era of John Chambers’ successor Chuck Robbins, a big focus has been Cisco’s transition to becoming a software company.

Until this year, there was reason to doubt whether that move would work – mostly because switch and router revenues were declining when Robbins started the transformation, and it took until May this year for software to catch up.

Even then, software sales ride on the success of a particular device: the Catalyst 9000, which Robbins in May described as the company’s most successful launch ever.

It’s not the first time Cisco’s tried to pursue a software strategy – the company’s efforts date back to the middle of the 2000s – but this time, it’s worked, and it’s worth understanding what that means.

The first thing to understand about how much time Cisco’s put into the software strategy is this: it’s known for years that it can’t rely on switch and router hardware to keep customers loyal to Cisco.

Software helps keep customers, and that made me think back to Cisco Live 2018, when David Goeckeler, executive veep and GM in charge of networking and security brought DevNet veep and CTO Suzy Wee to the stage to explain why Cisco’s developed a Steve Ballmer-like affection for developers.

Wee’s segment starts at about 1:15:15 in the YouTube video of the keynote.

Youtube Video

Cisco’s DevNet has grown to half a million members, meaning that many network people have at least started to turn themselves into developers (Wee explained that term includes “power users” of network technology, not just people who churn out lines of code from their “basements”).

The size of that community, alongside application developers’ increasing interest in working with infrastructure (to get better insights into application performance, for example), is in Cisco’s view “the beginning of this inflection” in how the network business operates.

While (if the report is accurate) Amazon’s hoping that a white-box switch with open-source software will make people loyal to its cloud, Cisco’s hoping that half a million developers also represent a big reservoir of loyalty, harvesting sales to sticky customers willing to buy subscriptions.

That’s why Wee echoed (more quietly, with far greater decorum) Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer by saying “we love our developers”.

“When the network becomes programmable there’s a fundamental shift of how applications work with infrastructure”, Wee said. And there’s a fundamental shift in how the vendor works with its customers.

By the way, supporting the opened-up DNA Center are:

  • The DevNet DNA Developer Centre – aggregating everything about DNA Center;
  • DevNet code exchange – a curated list of DNA Center projects developers have published on GitHub; and
  • DevNet ecosystem exchange – to help customers find partners in the ecosystem.

The other thing to note about DevNet and the DNA Center that supports it is that openness goes only so far. If you expect an open source project to land at GitHub with a liberal software license, you’ll have to keep waiting.

In his keynote, Goeckeler announced the company’s extending intent-based networking beyond the walls of Cisco’s hardware and software.

It’s a characteristically Switchzilla definition of “open” – APIs, yes; plugin capabilities, yes; can manage competitors kit, yes; a DNA Center SDK to make third-party development easier, yes.

While he said Cisco decided DNA Center “needs to be open and extensible”, and that the company is “extending the open and programmable access across the entire network”, it’s a one-way openness.

The APIs allow “anybody to build applications” on DNA Center; management integration lets developers draw in data from other vendors’ IT management systems; and the SDKs “allow third-party networking to be part of the fabric” – the Cisco fabric, since the goal is for Cisco to include other vendors’ networking into things like service chains fit into Cisco’s intent-based networking.

And with half-a-million DevNet developers to call on any capability AWS delivers, Cisco will be able to replicate pretty rapidly. reg

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Article source: https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/07/17/cisco_aws_analysis/

Amazon Cloud Computing Threat Overblown? Cisco, Arista Rebound

Shares in Arista Networks (ANET) and Cisco Systems (CSCO) rebounded Monday amid recent speculation that Amazon.com (AMZN) may dive into their networking gear market. One analyst said Amazon may seek a cloud computing partner rather than a rivalry with suppliers.

X

A report that Amazon’s cloud computing unit could sell home-grown data switches to business customers sent down shares in Cisco, Arista and Juniper on Friday. On Monday, Cisco stock bounced back 1.7% to close at 42.50 on the stock market today. Arista climbed 1.6% to 270.84. Juniper Networks (JNPR) was unchanged at 27.86.

One possibility is that the e-commerce behemoth could be interested in selling networking gear only to its cloud customers rather than companies generally, analysts say. Amazon Web Services is the largest provider of cloud services. Its customers rent computing resources via internet connections.

“We believe AWS isn’t a direct competitive threat to the incumbent networking vendors, but there could be a broader hybrid cloud strategy at play,” UBS analyst Tejas Venkatesh said in a report to clients Monday. “Every cloud vendor is partnering to address hybrid cloud: Google with Cisco and Nutanix (NTNX), Microsoft Azure with Cisco, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) and others. And, AWS with Red Hat (RHT) and VMware (VMW).”

AWS as well as Facebook (FB), Microsoft (MSFT) and Alphabet‘s (GOOGL) Google develop their own computing hardware for high-performance data centers that provide cloud services. The data centers are packed with computer servers.

One goal of the cloud companies is creating hybrid infrastructure that links private corporate data centers and shared, web-based facilities. To do that, Google and Microsoft have partnered with tech hardware and software companies.

Amazon Looking To Partner?

Amazon could be next, says Venkatesh. He says Amazon’s networking gear uses Cumulus or internal software. Startup Cumulus is a rival of Arista. Amazon lowers costs by running its software on “white box” hardware provided by Asian suppliers, he says.

Amazon is just one cloud computing stock to watch as companies shift tech spending.

If Amazon jumps into the networking market, Juniper Networks has the most to worry about. Meanwhile, two analysts see Cisco and Arista as better positioned near-term.

“Ultimately, we believe Juniper is most exposed to this development, while Cisco and Arista Networks are in better position to compete given their solid switching products, strong customer following and installed bases,” Credit Suisse analyst Sami Badri said in his note to clients.

Juniper Most At Risk?

Piper Jaffray analyst James Fish agrees.

“The most at-risk vendor in our view is Juniper due to its exposure to Amazon as a customer, the growing amount of switching revenue, and the differentiation of its products still remaining on hardware over software,” he said in a report. “Cisco is most at risk longer-term, but the ongoing transition likely limits this risk.”

Arista Networks reports earnings on Aug. 2. Arista ranks No. 26 in the IBD 50 roster of fast-growing companies. Arista stock has been consolidating with a technical buy point of 311.77.

Cisco stock has dipped below its 50-day-moving average, a bearish sign. Amazon rose 0.8% to 1,827.67. Amazon stock has surged nearly 80% from a year ago.

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Article source: https://www.investors.com/news/technology/amazon-cloud-computing-networking-switches/

Black Press Media journalists win big at Canadian community …

Black Press Media is pleased to congratulate all of our winners in the 2018 Canadian Community Newspaper Awards.

Winners in the general excellence category include the Eagle Valley News, the Hope Standard, the Tofino-Ucluelet Westerly News, the Lake Cowichan Gazette, the Salmon Arm Observer, the Sooke News Mirror, and the Victoria News.

Victoria News reporter Kristyn Anthony earned first place for Best News Story in her circulation category, for “National CAF lawsuit picks up steam,” while Christine van Reeuwyk of the Oak Bay News picked up second place for “His name was Joe,” and Mission Record editor Kevin Mills earned third for “You want me to let them go?” in their own circulation categories.

For Best Feature Story in their circulation category, Fernie Free Press editor Phil McLachlan came in first place for “58 years into her life, Marsha Bradcoe found herself,” while Nelson Star reporter Tyler Harper earned second for “Call it intuition: Norm Pratt’s gift for finding people.”

Our series on women’s experiences of sexual harassment in the workplace earned first place in the Multimedia Feature category, while second place went to Keri Coles of the Oak Bay News for “Twists of fate across generations brings Pattinson memories home.”

To see all of this year’s CCNA winners, click here.

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Article source: https://www.revelstokereview.com/business/black-press-media-journalists-win-big-at-canadian-community-newspaper-awards/