Tech Data, Cisco Partner on Innovation Center

The team-up promises to offer solution providers education on the multicloud and hyperconvergence.

December 13, 2018

6 Slides

By Lynn Greiner

(Pictured above: Customers and partners celebrate the opening of the Tech Data Innovation Center last week in Mississauga, Ontario, Canada.)

As longtime partners, Tech Data and Cisco have learned to play well together. For a dozen years, Tech Data Canada has housed a demo center featuring Cisco products in its Mississauga, Ontario, head office, and it has enjoyed an average of 20 bookings per month from customers and partners.

But with today’s rapid changes in technology, the center was getting a bit long in the tooth, something that both Tech Data and Cisco agreed should be remedied. And so was born the notion of a shiny new version featuring the Cisco Multicloud HyperFlex Platform. It’s the first such facility in Canada.

“Solution providers struggle with different consumption models,” noted Tech Data Canada VP and GM Ed Galasso at the opening of the revamped Advanced Technology Solutions Centre (ATSC) in Mississauga. “By 2020, multicloud will be the new normal.”

Cisco Canada president Rola Dagher agreed, pointing out that the ATSC lets the companies bring people to experience the technology live.


Cisco Canada’s Rola Dagher

“It provides hands-on education so customers and partners are in a position to understand the path to hybrid cloud and hyperconverged,” she said.

“We made this investment for customers,” Galasso added. “Partners can offer to their staff and clients something they won’t find anywhere else in Canadian distribution. It will give customers the ability to bring in end users for an up close and personal look at the technologies.”

As time goes on, Tech Data plans to add more ecosystem partners to the mix. The next big investment, Galasso said, will be with Microsoft and Azure.

“The ‘A’ in ATSC stands for advanced,” he said. That means keeping up with technology, and keeping staff, customers and partners trained on the newest offerings. He thinks that today’s complexity creates the kind of environment that Tech Data can deliver — an end-to-end value proposition.

“We at Cisco believe that in order to survive in today’s world, you have to move fast, and you have to innovate even faster,” Dagher said. “We have to continue to transform our own organization to help you.”

With Cisco Canada on a roll – it was named the top country of the year, and service provider of the year at Cisco’s partner conference – she made a commitment: “We will continue to invest to make Canada the next hub of innovation.”

“People will only pay for value when they consume value,” added Brian Aebig, Tech Data’s VP enterprise solutions. “It’s up to us to make it consumable.”

Click through our slide show above for a tour of the facility.

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