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The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Intel, Cisco, Salesforce and Alphabet

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For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – September 27, 2016 – announces the list of stocks featured in the Analyst Blog. Every day the Zacks Equity Research analysts discuss the latest news and events impacting stocks and the financial markets. Stocks recently featured in the blog include Intel (NASDAQ: (INTC - Free Report) -Free Report ), Cisco (NASDAQ: (CSCO - Free Report) -Free Report ), Salesforce (NYSE: (CRM - Free Report) -Free Report ) and Alphabet (NASDAQ: (GOOGL - Free Report) -Free Report ).

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

Here are highlights from Monday’s Analyst Blog:

Tech Stock Roundup: INTC’s Retail Focus, CSCO and CRM Partner Up

Technology stocks didn’t gain much last week, despite some important announcements, exciting new products and important collaborations. Last week was significant because Intel (NASDAQ: (INTC - Free Report) -Free Report ) got a new CFO, Cisco (NASDAQ: (CSCO - Free Report) -Free Report ) and Salesforce (NYSE: (CRM - Free Report) -Free Report ) announced a cloud collaboration and Alphabet’s (NASDAQ: (GOOGL - Free Report) -Free Report ) Google went deeper into travel with its Trips app.

Here’s a quick look at the top stories:

Intel Gets New CFO

Intel’s new CFO is the clearest indicator thus far of where the company is headed strategically. Robert (Bob) Swan is the new man in and he will be making $850,000 as base salary, $1.2 million as annual bonus and $5.5 million as hiring bonus. His new hire stock grant and annual equity award could each be worth as much as $9.5 million and $6.5 million, respectively.

So the question is, why is Intel splurging this amount of money on the CFO when it has obviously been walloped by the sluggish PC market, inadequate returns to date from new areas of promise and competing fabs/foundries catching up with its manufacturing process lead? These pressures also led it to significantly downsize its workforce.

If the man was experienced in chipmaking that would still kind of make sense. But his experience has been elsewhere, most significantly as CFO of eBay where he spent nine years and earlier, his 15 years at GE where he had senior finance roles like divisional CFO for GE Transportation Systems, GE Healthcare Europe and GE Lighting. He was last a partner at private equity firm General Atlantic where he advised clients on strategic M&A matters and helped develop their finance functions with a special focus on the IT sector.

The question is perhaps best answered when we take a look at some recent actions the company has taken. According to data from CB Insights, Intel Capital has been the biggest investor in ecommerce companies (mainly Storenvy, Snapdeal, Reebonz, 1MG Technologies) between 2010 and Aug 2016. It has surpassed investors like Google Capital which was #2, Tencent, which was #3, Alibaba at #6 and eBay at #9.

Moreover, in January this year, Intel launched its retail IoT platform, which is a reference model combining a retail sensor, a gateway and the Intel Trusted Analytics Platform to deliver near-real-time intelligence for retailers in the hopes of speeding up their IoT adoption.

Bob Swan’s background, contacts and expertise indicates that Intel is seeing some results from these efforts.

Cisco, Salesforce Collaborate on Cloud, IoT

Cisco and Salesforce have announced an agreement to share collaboration, IoT and customer service technologies in the cloud for the benefit of common customers and thereby boost sales of both companies.

Cisco Spark and WebEx solutions will be integrated into the Sales Cloud and Service Cloud through the Salesforce Lightning Framework by the second half of 2017. The combination of Cisco Jasper and Salesforce’s IoT cloud will help the deployment, management and monetization of a company’s IoT devices within a similar timeframe. On the other hand, the Cisco Unified Contact Center Enterprise and Salesforce Service Cloud are integrated and available today.

Google Unveils Trips App

The world’s largest organizer of Internet information has just decided to share a piece with us. The company has launched the new Trips app for Android and iOS that pulls out your reservations from your gmail (you need to sign in with your Google account, the one that has your reservations and travel details) and maps out the entire trip. This information, along with maps and routes connecting the places you’re visiting can be downloaded for offline use in case you want to minimize data consumption because international data plans can be expensive.

If you’re travelling to one of the 200+ cities Google has collected information on, you’ll also be treated to editorial guides and personalized recommendations on points of interest, tourist attractions, restaurants, etc.

Inside the app, Reservations organizes your flights, hotel information and rental car reservations. Need to Know contains directions, local currency, emergency information, etc. Things to Do is the most interesting because it can build custom itineraries based on the length of your stay or your recorded preferences on any Google service.

Or if you want a more focused trip, you can consider one of the specific guides on shopping, museums, or other interests, in which you can add or delete any other place you’d like to visit along the way. If your data is turned on, the app will mention the hours any place of interest is open.

Google’s Trips app doesn’t help you to buy services, its focus is on organizing tour trip information so you have it at your fingertips. So in that sense it competes directly with TripAdvisor, but not so much with Priceline or Expedia, at least not yet.

Today, Zacks is promoting its ''Buy'' stock recommendations. Get #1Stock of the Day pick for free.

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