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Cisco announces $1 billion investment plan in Russia

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Russia's tech hub vision
  • Russian President Dmitri Medvedev present for Cisco announcement
  • Medvedev sends first Twitter message from Twitter HQ
  • Cisco, Russia also ink $100 million deal for tech center in Sklokovo, Russia
  • Medvedev to meet with President Obama Thursday at the White House

(CNN) -- Russian President Dmitri Medvedev launched a technology tour of California Wednesday morning, visiting Cisco Systems for the company's announcement of a $1 billion investment in Russian projects, and sending his first Twitter message.

"Greetings to everyone, I'm at Twitter and this is my first message," the Russian leader tweeted from Twitter headquarters in San Francisco.

Medvedev also posted a photograph of the "view outside my hotel window" in San Francisco and another of himself greeting Twitter employees from the new @KremlinRussia account.

But at Cisco Systems headquarters in San Jose, Medvedev's visit was serious business. He joined Cisco CEO John Chambers for Cisco's announcement that it plans to invest $1 billion over several years in company projects aimed at developing innovation and entrepreneurship in Russia.

Medvedev and Chambers also witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Cisco and the co-chairman of the high-tech innovation center Russia is planning to build in the town of Skolkovo outside of Moscow.

Chambers said Cisco will bring $100 million in venture capital to the projected center.

"We're all in," Chambers told the Russian president.

Medvedev, dressed in jeans, a sport jacket and open neck shirt, is touring companies in California's Silicon Valley. His schedule also includes Apple,and Yandex, Russia's largest search engine.

"I want to see everything, I want to see how it works," he told CNN.

He's also scheduled to meet at a coffee shop with Russians working in Silicon Valley and then deliver a speech to Stanford University students. Wednesday evening he flies to Washington for Thursday meetings and lunch with President Barack Obama at the White House.


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