It is a back-back, double-header for me this weekend, as I head from an action-packed week in Orlando to exotic Edinburgh, Scotland for F5 Agility. F5 is Cisco’s premier partner and I can’t wait to be in the thick of action at the Edinburgh International Convention Centre next week. From “you are lucky to be there” to “WoWs”, I am fast becoming the envy of my friends at Cisco. For me personally, it is the second EMEA F5 Agility event, and last year I had a blast at the Bella Center, Copenhagen. These things aside, there is a lot for me to report about Cisco’s participation in this event.
You probably know F5 recently announced a new CEO. F5’s incoming CEO Manny Rivelo in his keynote themed around “Innovate, Expand and Deliver”, will take you on a tour of current market trends, how F5 has grown in market momentum under John McAdam’s tenure, the evolution of the F5 Platform from simple load balancer to ADC to support Cloud based business models, the growing importance of enterprise security, recent F5 acquisitions, and last but not the least the growing eco-system of Partners. I recommend getting started with Manny’s keynote. Manny is also hosting invitation only roundtables to key verticals Retail and financial earlier in the morning, same day. Following Manny, Dean Darwin, Marketing SVP of F5 will deliver F5’s forward looking vision. Dean’s session aligns well with Manny’s keynote in that he will address how to Innovate and continue to be a thought leader, Expand business models (like As A Service) and Deliver customer satisfaction and financial excellence.
There is plenty of excitement Cisco is bringing to this event centred around Cisco’s award winning SDN strategy, Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI) .
Cisco Exec Shashi Kiran is joining F5 Exec Calvin Rowland and fellow Cisco Exec Patrick Schmidt in a panel session May 20. For those of you not familiar with ACI, this panel session is a great opportunity to learn how Cisco and F5 are expanding their partnership, how their combined thought leadership is advancing the SDN landscape, and customer successes and momentum experienced by Cisco ACI, F5’s BIG IP & BIG IQ in the marketplace. The panellists are seasoned industry experts and I promise it will be a treat to the attendees.
If you somehow missed the panel session, there is room to cheer. Shashi is hosting a breakout session the next day, May 21, 11.30 local time. What’s unique about this Breakout Session? Well, you will get to not only hear Shashi eloquently walk you through the role of Cisco ACI in today’s Application-Oriented Economy, but also see customers and partners join him on stage and share their success stories with ACI. Shashi will discuss how emerging applications are placing huge demands on Data Center Infrastructure and how grossly unprepared they are to meet the same. Shashi will then introduce Cisco ACI, an open, scalable, programmable SDN solution that helps address these infrastructure challenges. Shashi will illustrate how Cisco’s open architecture enables seamless integration of F5 into ACI’s policy framework and how the joint solution brings unprecedented agility and end-end L2-L7 accelerated application delivery. Shashi’s breakout as I said earlier, also features a unique Customer and Partner segment towards the end. Martin Lipka from Pulsant corporation and Stefaan Hinderyckx from Dimension Data will join Shashi on stage to share their ACI experiences. How often do you get this comprehensive experience in a breakout session, one that is devoid of a sales pitch. Sounds great, doesn’t it?
That is not all. Cisco ACI brings you additional customer engagement opportunity in the solutions expo hall. We are featuring cool demos showcasing our joint solutions namely, ACI-BIG IP and ACI-BIG IQ on both May 20 and 21, during the entire duration of the expo hours. Stop by the Cisco demo booth to get a personal walk-through of our solution working. Our product experts are available to engage you in white-board type sessions and to compliment the demos, we also run short duration presentations in the Cisco theatre at periodic intervals. Should you desire, we are happy to meet you in 1-1 meetings, so let us know how we can enrich your experience at the event.
For all the hard work we all do at the event, there is plenty F5 offers to let us relax and enjoy. The evening event on May 20 allows attendees to step back to a time of knights and ladies, including one of Scotland’s most famous royals – Mary Queen of Scots.
Agility attendees will have the ability to see all that the castle has to offer, from Mons Meg, one of the largest cannons in the world, to the huge collection of weapons and armoury in The Great Hall, the Stone of Destiny and the Royal Palace Crown Jewels. Network with your fellow attendees while enjoying tasty food and drink, entertaining music, knowledgeable guides, and more are awaiting you on Wednesday 20th May.
I am eager to see you all in Edinburgh next week. There are some useful links for you to check out before your visit on how Cisco ACI and F5 work together on the innovation front.