* Cisco could pull or raise bid, but no decision yet
* Tender offer could also be extended
* Cisco says offer for Tandberg fair
* Tandberg shares recoup losses, Cisco down 3 pct (Changes sourcing, dateline, bylines; adds details on Cisco’s offer; updates share price)
By Anupreeta Das and Quentin Webb
NEW YORK/LONDON, Oct 30 (Reuters) - Cisco Systems Inc CSCO.O is mulling options, including withdrawing or raising its $3 billion bid for Tandberg SA TAA.OL, a person familiar with the matter said, as the standoff between the networking gear maker and some Tandberg shareholders intensifies.
But Cisco is unlikely to make a final decision before its month-long tender offer for the shares of the Norwegian video conferencing company expires on Nov. 9, the source said on Friday.
Cisco, the world’s biggest maker of routers and switches that direct computer traffic, offered to buy Tandberg earlier this month for 153.50 Norwegian Crowns a share.
Tandberg’s board of directors has recommended the offer be accepted, but investors holding 24 percent of the shares have snubbed it, hoping they can force a higher offer.
Under the deal terms, Cisco cannot buy Tandberg unless 90 percent of shareholders tender in their shares.
But Cisco could always decide to extend its tender offer to give shareholders more time rather than pulling or sweetening its bid. No counter-bidder for Tandberg has yet emerged.
Tandberg shares fell 2.7 percent on the Oslo bourse after Bloomberg reported that Cisco might walk away from the offer, but partially recovered after a halt in trading.
But a person familiar with the matter told Reuters Cisco is far from deciding that it will withdraw its bid, although it is being strongly considered by top executives.
Cisco, which has $35 billion in cash, could also sweeten its bid to get the deal done, the source added, speaking on condition of anonymity because these discussions are private.
“It would seem odd to me that (Cisco) would walk away for a few hundred million dollars ... I think for 170 NOK they will probably get it through,” said a major Tandberg shareholder who is among those holding out for a higher offer.
Cisco repeated on Friday that its offer is fair, but declined to comment further.
“We have stated previously that we believe we are paying a fair price for a quality asset and our offer comes recommended by the Tandberg board of directors,” the company said in an emailed statement.
Cisco, which has been on an acquisition spree lately, wants to capture a swathe of the fast-growing corporate video communications market by buying Tandberg to fill the gap between its existing tele-presence and Webex offerings.
Cisco shares fell about 3 percent to $22.82 in afternoon trading on the Nasdaq. The Oslo bourse suspended trading in Tandberg stock after the shares fell 2.7 percent to 152.30 Norwegian crowns, below Cisco’s offer of 153.50 crowns per share. They later recouped their losses when trading was resumed and closed 1.8 percent lower at 153.70 crowns. ($1=5.658 Norwegian Crown) (Reporting by Anupreeta Das and Quentin Webb; additional reporting by Aasa Christine Stoltz in Oslo, Georgina Prodhan and Raji Menon in London, Christoph Steitz in Frankfurt; editing by Andre Grenon)