As the reality of recession finally kicks in, Cisco CEO John Chambers has become one of the first "heavyweight" IT heads to warn that his company's revenues could fall as much as 10% in its current quarter.
Reuters reports that Cisco is often considered a bellwether in the IT sector and that the company's share price fell 6% on Chambers' pronouncement.
"We do believe that the challenges that initially affected the US have spread to other countries around the world," Chambers says, adding that it was hard to be sure about the outlook in 2009.
"It's probably the second most difficult time in my career in terms of my comfort level with the forecast," he says, noting that increasing Internet traffic meant there was still demand for network equipment and conditions were better than during the 2001 downturn.
Chambers was talking during a teleconference following the release of Cisco's first quarter results. For the quarter, the company announced an 8% increase in revenues to $10,3-billion, with net profit of $2,2-billion.