Cisco Partner Summit 2018 reinforced many things for me. Most significantly, I continued to receive positive feedback from you and witnessed your continued support for our vision for the future together. At the same time, I was once again struck by the rapid pace of progress. It is unmistakable, ever-present, and it is the driving force that will determine if your future is characterized by risk or great opportunity.

As many of you heard me say, the future is now!

  • The planning required for new business models requires investment, resources, infrastructure, and knowledge that is not available on the open market
  • If you are the type who typically waits for ‘the right time to move,’ that time is right now
  • You know that intent-based networking is at an inflection point that will become technology folklore for decades to come

I can confidently make these statements because I heard them from many of you at Partner Summit. You told me the next phase is all about technology and business models that include:

  1. Agility and flexibility
  2. Integrated security
  3. Adaptability
  4. Simplicity
  5. Lifecycle alignment to customer’s needs

You did an amazing thing that is already in the history books; you made the Catalyst 9000 the fastest selling product to $1B that Cisco has ever known. Given that initial success, there is now a longer-term benefit for you–an ongoing treasure chest of profitable services. It is simply waiting there for you to unlock it!

For the first time, you have a method for renewable and sustainable revenues in the form of network software subscriptions. Why should you care? Because software is not just about recurring margin on subscription renewals, it is also a platform for open and extensible customization. The software is where the value is primarily experienced by our customers, and it creates opportunities for you to be the trusted advisor and is sticky in regards to long-term relationships. Your customers are taking notice, and even Gartner has Cisco leading the magic quadrants in not one, but four categories.1

Two key immediate opportunities to do so are in driving the software value in Cisco DNA Assurance and this year’s huge market opportunity to win in SD-WAN.

Assemble your team. Go to where the treasure is, through installed-base activations, renewable software subscriptions. Reap what is rightfully yours.