Pushing Partners For Growth
Wendy Bahr is looking at global market conditions, and she likes what she sees. The Cisco channel chief is encouraged by the amount of cash customers have on their balance sheets, as well as an advantageous interest rate environment that allows them to borrow inexpensively.
With that in mind, Bahr is pushing Cisco partners to drive the services, software technology and subscription-based consumption models upon which the San Jose, Calif., networking giant is staking its future.
In an interview at Cisco's Partner Connection Week conference this week, Bahr said she sees significant opportunity for partners that transition to a services offering centered around automation, analytics and lifecycle management while selling next-generation technologies like Cisco's fast-growing, subscription-based Catalyst 9000 switch family and a security portfolio that continues to gel.
Bahr considers security one of the biggest opportunities for Cisco partners and says the company's security strategy allows it to both gain entry to new clients with individual solutions and expand into an end-to-end portfolio once there. Bahr said Cisco is coming into its own in the security market, and could find itself in a position to battle some of the fragmentation in that space.
What follows is an edited excerpt of Bahr's conversation with CRN.