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ONI Goes For IPO: Page 2 of 2

In fact, Russo took time out to dis' ONI's product line. "They're making one of those complex DWDM products and I struggle with that approach. Service providers want simplicity," he said.

Russo went on to say that Cisco is looking for an optical networking company to round out its portfolio of metropolitan area network optical products. "What do I want? I want a bolt-ass, stupid optical CSU/DSU that handles wavelengths for less."

Ordinarily, negative comments from Cisco in general, and Russo in particular, could put a dent in ONI's IPO aspirations. After all, Russo's last company, Cerent, has practically reinvented the Sonet market. And he is now the optical overlord at Cisco.

But this time around some think Russo's comments may be those of the jilted suitor. "He could just be pissed because he offered to buy them and they said no," says R.Scott Raynovich, New York bureau chief for Red Herring