BlueWater: Top Cisco Partner Makes MSP Move

One of Cisco Systems' top channel partners is making the managed services move. BlueWater Communications Group, Cisco's US and Canada partner of the year, has built a network operations center (NOC) and has lined up 30 mid-market customers for managed network services. Here's a look at BlueWater's strategy, along with some tips for other aspiring MSPs.

This isn't yet another "break-fix to recurring revenue" story. BlueWater ranks among Cisco's fastest-growing integrators. The company's revenue grew from $1.9 million to more than $70 million in less than three years, notes the annual CRN Fast Growth report.

Based on Long Island and in Manhattan, BlueWater focuses on mid-market customers in several verticals: Financial Services, Telecommunications, Legal Services, Advertising, Manufacturing, Healthcare, Retail, and progressive Educational institutions and Government.

I caught up with BlueWater CEO Bob Cagnazzi at the Cisco Partner Velocity conference in Paris. Some key thoughts:

  • Instead of managing PCs and mobile devices, BlueWater is focusing on managed voice, video and IP infrastructure services.
  • BlueWater has no plans to offer its NOCs to peer VARs and MSPs. Cagnazzi considered the move but BlueWater won't become a master MSP because of potential competitive conflicts with other channel players.
For a bit more on BlueWater's strategy check out this MSPmentor FastChat video:


Howdy, Neighbor

Full disclosure: I've known Cagnazzi my entire life. We grew up on the same block and we still live in the same town. We were sitting in a session at the Cisco Partner Velocity conference in Paris when I asked Bob for an update on the managed services strategy. Within 5 minutes, were having a deeper MSP conversation. I'll share more thoughts from Cagnazzi in the weeks ahead.

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