Cisco Unites VARs, ISVs over Integrated Apps

By Sara Driscoll  |  Print this article Print

Cisco opens up its technology to third-party developers and looks for collaboration between solution providers and ISVs.

VARs and ISVs are being brought even closer together by Cisco Systems, as it looks to drive further into the applications space.

Cisco announced April 10 at its Partner Summit in Honolulu that it is opening up its ISR (Integrated Services Router) to third-party developers and customers. ISR and WAAS (Wide Area Application Services) are now open to application integration as part of Cisco's Empowered Branch initiative, which it launched in 2007. To enable this integration, Cisco has launched the Cisco Application Extension Platform, providing open, Linux-based ISR hardware modules for application development.

Cisco is encouraging ISVs and developers designing custom applications to look for a tie-up with its VARs, and vice versa. "This will open up both sets of customer bases and help them to differentiate with customer applications tailored to different verticals," said Inbar Lasser-Raab, senior director of access routing and switching at Cisco.

Cisco said those partners that have already sold integrated applications with its network platform have on average a 35 percent higher services mix to their businesses and 20 percent higher gross margin.

To help unite ISVs and solution providers, Cisco has its ISPN (Industry Solution Partner Network) program, launched in Dublin in September 2007. The program helps VARs and ISVs develop relationships by finding each other, providing training and marketing and also providing financial incentive to solution providers that work with ISVs.

Derek Downs, president of Cistera Networks, has been a member of the ISPN program since the beginning. He said his company joined because it wanted to add advanced applications to its IP telephony technology. "ISPN has allowed us to do this and more. We now have more applications and more relationships, which helps us to expand our customer base," Downs said.


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Sara Driscoll began her journalism career at 16 years old on her local newspaper, The Watford Observer. Working part time, she covered a range of beats. Leaving to complete her Journalism Degree at Bournemouth University, UK, Sara then went on to graduate and work for Emap. She began as a reporter on APR, Emap's construction title, being promoted to senior reporter with a year.Sara then joined VNU Business Publications as Deputy News Editor on CRN, the weekly trade title for channel players. She covered industry/business news from vendors, distributors and resellers, product announcements, partner announcements as well as market and trend analysis, research and in depth articles to predict up and coming trends in the sector. She was promoted within a year to News Editor, a year later to Deputy Editor and the following year became Editor. Sara remained editor of CRN for three years, launching the magazine on new platforms including CRN TV and eBooks, as well as several magazine and web site redesigns. She was called on for expert industry comment from various publications including appearing on live BBC news programs. Sara joined Ziff Davis Enterprise as Editor of eWeek Channel Insider. She runs the title in all formats – online up to the minute news, newsletters, emails alerts and events. She also manages the brand of Channel Insider in all formats - events, shows, awards, panel debates and roundtables.Sara can be reached at:sara.driscoll@ziffdavisenterprise.com

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