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Ericsson Denies Cisco Merger Talk Rumor

Ericsson shot down a report claiming that Cisco Systems and Ericsson are talking about a merger just days after the companies forged a far-reaching technology and business partnership.

Swedish daily Dagens Industri reported that Cisco is seeking a deal with Ericsson's board and major shareholders on a possible takeover.

"We note that there are rumors in the market regarding an acquisition of Ericsson by Cisco possibly spurred by the recent announcement of a partnership between our two companies,” Ericsson president, CEO and board member Hans Vestberg said in a statement issued Monday.  “The talks leading up to the partnership announcement have been ongoing for a year and there have not been any discussions whatsoever on a merger or an acquisition."

The business agreement, announced on November 9, covers joint development, product reselling, and collaboration in key emerging markets, and seeks to create an additional $1 billion in incremental sales for each company by 2018.

The day it was announced, Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins said a partnership, rather than a merger, was the option that that would enable both companies to pursue their business goals at the most rapid pace.

“We think that this brings the innovation from both sides and allows us to move now. It allows us to absolutely deliver solutions to our customer immediately,” Robbins said.