Innovation. It’s one of my favorite words because it shows how transformations can take shape when teams are performing well, and working together. Chuck Robbins has committed to an increased pace of innovation at Cisco, and we’ve been delivering – from the Catalyst family of intent-based networking switches, to security and multicloud advancements, to cognitive collaboration. But, our innovation doesn’t always come from inside Cisco. It comes from you, our partners! Our customers rely on your purpose-built applications, as an extension of the Cisco platform, to help them digitize their businesses and achieve valuable outcomes. And you rely on developing intellectual property to differentiate yourself, create greater customer loyalty, and generate more predictable recurring revenues.

According to IDC, the margins from application development services can be as high as 70%. So it’s good for your business. Partners are definitely catching on, as DevNet recently surpassed 500,000 members, many of whom are partner developers.

We want to challenge you to develop new solutions on top of Cisco. So, get ready to show us your apps with the 2019 Cisco Partner Innovation Challenge!

Cisco Partner Innovation Challenge

Last November at Cisco Partner Summit, I announced the winners of the 2018 Partner Innovation Challenge – Altus and MFEC. Luckily, Oliver Tuszik decided to keep the ball rolling – and keep the prize money growing – for 2019! This year’s 1stplace winner will receive $200,000, and 2ndplace will receive $50,000.

The challenge is designed to drive awareness and adoption of Cisco APIs across our global partner community. It’s open to any Cisco reseller who can develop a solution that showcases creativity in solving customer challenges, while harnessing the power of Cisco open APIs across any part of our portfolio. The challenge officially opened in March, and we already have 58 partner submissions! The deadline to submit an initial proposal isn’t until July 29, with final solution submissions due September 14 – so you still have time.

To learn more, visit cs.co/innovationchallenge2019. You’ll find details about the challenge process, criteria, and deadlines. Our Asia Pacific team also got on board, so you’ll find details about their regional prizes and winners spanning multiple countries.

Accelerating Platform Enabled Outcomes

We know it’s a big shift to transform your business with developer skills while also performing and running your day-to-day business. We’ve made exciting progress supporting partner transformations through DevNet, a community focused on new possibilities. To build on that, Cisco is creating more resources and programs to help you get started. Our global Partner Programmability Blitz includes a series of live and on-demand events designed for your engineering teams to start developing their own intellectual property on top of the Cisco platform. By the end of FY19, more than 95 partners will have participated. And more than 100,000 individuals across 790 partners will have received programmability enablement via online learning, in-person boot camps, and workshops from Cisco.

Join me at the next #CiscoChat on Thursday, May 9 at 10 a.m. Pacific to learn more. I’ll be joined by Alex Pujols, our Global Partner Org SE Leader, and Pete Johnson, our Cloud Principle Systems Engineer, via a livestream on Cisco.com and Facebook Live, where we’ll discuss programmability, APIs, partner enablement, and the Partner Innovation Challenge. We’ll also take your questions. You can also join the chat here on Twitter or here on YouTube.

I’m excited to see what new innovations our partners come up with this year. And I’m always excited and humbled by the great partners and relationships we’ve established around the world. Together, we can do so much! So pull your developers together, throw and pizza party or hackathon, and get your creative juices flowing.