Cisco ( CSCO) agreed Thursday to pay $9 million in cash to acquire router software maker Parc Technologies of London.

Cisco, the leading maker of equipment for corporate communications networks, said Parc develops traffic engineering solutions and software for routing optimization. Routers are devices that direct network data along the proper pathways.

"Our customers are looking for efficient technology with Quality of Service guarantees, reduced congestion, efficient back-up planning, fast restoration and optimal provisioning. Cisco and Parc together have created a market-leading MPLS traffic engineering planning and optimization application that brings immediate value to Cisco's customers," said Cisco's Cliff Meltzer. "We are excited to welcome Parc's highly specialized team of algorithm developers and software engineers to Cisco."

San Jose, Calif.-based Cisco said its acquisition of Parc, a spinoff from a renowned center for research into search algorithms (based at Imperial College, University of London), is expected to close by the end of its fiscal first quarter.

On Thursday, Cisco was flat at $22.42.

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