Opportunities, Challenges Facing Cisco PartnersOpportunities, Challenges Facing Cisco Partners
Cisco Live was this week's event headliner. Reps from Computacenter, Molaprise, NTT and WWT weigh in on their experiences.
June 9, 2023
CISCO LIVE — Companies ranging across the diverse ecosystem of Cisco partners are embracing the vendor’s movement toward simplicity and platform consolidation.
Cisco hosted its annual conference in Las Vegas this week, drawing in upward of 20,000 partners and customers. The vendor unveiled numerous portfolio updates, many of which include unifying its respective networking and security platforms. Those updates include road map timelines to bring generative AI into Cisco Security Cloud and Webex.
Oliver Tuszik, Cisco’s senior vice president of global partner sales and general manager of routes to market, said businesses of all sizes need technology more than ever to enable business outcomes.
Cisco’s Oliver Tuszik
“There were times where all digitization was mainly happening at the bigger accounts. It’s now also the midmarket and also the SMB that drive digital transformation. No matter what size of business you have, you need to have a digital business model,” Tuszik told Channel Futures in an interview.
Executives in keynotes and conversations with analysts said they’re out to establish Cisco’s identity as a platform company. And partners who spoke to Channel Futures said they see Cisco taking serious strides in that direction.
“IT has become way too complex. It’s an inhibitor to where businesses are trying to go. I am glad to see Cisco focused on simplicity,” said Jeff Jennings, director of Computacenter‘s USA networking portfolio.
Cisco Partners Key to Platform Updates
Computacenter’s Jeff Jennings
Tuszik added that the company leaned heavily on Cisco partners and end customers for the updates it made around platform consolidation and consolidation. Approximately 90% of Cisco’s business runs through indirect channels. Cisco in recent months has publicized what it calls “Age of the Partner.”
“This position really differentiates them as it demonstrates that they do not think of the channel as a necessary evil for scale as some others in the space do, but rather as the true driving force behind all progress in business and technology,” said Janet Schijns, CEO of the channel consultancy JS Group. “You see that in the investments they are making in technology that surrounds their legacy products as well as the position they have taken in managed services in the market, especially in the SMB space.”
JS Group’s Janet Schijns
Channel Futures interviewed people from four different partner firms to see what they think about Cisco’s latest initiatives. Partners shared how platform consolidation will impact them and their customers, their feelings on Cisco’s partnership with cloud marketplaces and the conversations they’re having about generative AI. The companies vary significantly in size, from New York-based consultancy Molaprise to behemoth international service provider NTT.
Scroll through the 11 slides above to see comments from Cisco partners at this week’s Cisco Live.
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