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Cisco, AOL In Networking Pact

Shares of American Online and Cisco Systems rose Tuesday after the two companies unveiled a technology pact to speed AOL users' access to the Internet.

AOL chose Cisco to supply high-volume network equipment, specifically Cisco 12000 Series gigabit switch routers, to strengthen the backbone connecting AOL subscribers to the Internet.

Cisco rose 2 3/8 to 100 1/2. AOL jumped 5 3/16, or 5 percent, to 109 5/8.

"With the Cisco 12000 gigabit switch router, we found an excellent solution to position ourselves for continued growth," said Joe Barrett, AOL's vice president of Internet operations.

Barrett said AOL now supports more than 730,000 simultaneous users and 18,800 online hits per second. The company, he said, is experiencing continued customer growth.

The new routers are intended to deliver voice or video without interruption over the Internet.

Separately, Cisco on Monday said it would launch its first-ever branding campaign. The company will start airing TV ads Aug. 24. Its agency is San Francisco-based Goldberg Moser O'Neill.

Written By Steve Gelsi

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