More Flip analysis
This “other revenue” totaled $2.6 billion in Cisco’s fiscal 2010, up from $1.6 billion in fiscal 2009. The biggest single factor for that billion-dollar boost was $317 million in Flip camera sales. You read that right: Cisco just shut down a business that brought in $317 million in sales in its last fiscal year.
And yes, that amounts to less than one percent of Cisco’s overall sales. But it had to be a profitable business. I submit as Exhibit B a teardown analysis of the Flip Mino HD camera conducted by the market research firm IHS iSuppli shortly after Cisco’s $590 million acquisition of Pure Digital in March of that year.
It wasn’t necessarily the wrong vision (well maybe Umi was, but let’s leave that aside for the moment). It may be that Cisco was simply the wrong owner. Cisco’s purchase was puzzling in 2009 and still seems puzzling now. But more puzzling is why Cisco seems to have gone to no effort whatsoever to find the Flip–and the several hundred people responsible for making it–a suitable home.