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Sharpening Cisco’s Tech Edge

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Daisy Chittilapilly, 

President, Cisco India and South Asia
age: 50
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“A medley of many experiences.” This is how Daisy Chittilapilly, who joined Cisco as an account manager in 2004, sums up her journey at Cisco. When she took over as President of Cisco, India and SAARC, India was at the cusp of digital transformation while recovering from the second Covid-19 wave. The company was in the midst of a key transition globally—pivoting to software and subscription-based model from its traditional hardware focus. “Pivoting the team towards the new business model was a big shift,” she says. Her mentorship has been instrumental in furthering Cisco’s target of impacting 50 million lives in India by 2025 through investments in start-ups or skilling initiatives. Cisco’s country digitisation acceleration programme is nurturing 51 digital projects across sectors. For instance, Cisco is helping Kerala strengthen its agriculture and aquaculture ecosystems. In infrastructure, Cisco has partnered with some of the largest Indian seaports and inland waterways to digitise processes. It is also equipping students with emerging technologies like AI/ML and cyber security. The initiative has already enabled training of 10.5 lakh students since inception.