04:43 PM

Cisco Gives Partners More Options To Offer SMBs

Positioned to boost business for channel partners, Cisco introduced new products and services specifically for small and midsize businesses.

Positioned to boost business for channel partners, Cisco introduced new products and services specifically for small and midsize businesses.With partners gathered in Boston for the Cisco Partner Summit, the networking provider took pains to emphasize the importance of the SMB market to its overall business and the fortunes of its channel partners.

Today's announcement of new product and service offerings results, in part, from Cisco's announcement last fall that it would invest $100 million in its small business initiative. In the interim, the company has not only been working on its solutions for SMBs, but also polishing it's rhetoric. Examples:

"SMB is a $7 billion opportunity for all of us," said Andrew Sage, vice president of small business sales. "Small is the new big!"

"Small business to Cisco is definitely big business," said Rick Moran, Cisco's vice president of small business networking.

Sound familiar? It should to any reader familiar with the bMighty manifesto and any of the others (from the New York Times to Chris Anderson) who have jumped on the SMB bandwagon.

Cisco wasn't along in going multimedia at the event. bMighty friend and columnist Steve Hilton of Yankee Group was there too and posted this video chock full of his musing, observations, and humor about the vibe and substance of the Cisco Partner Summit.

2009 Cisco Partner Summit SMB Perspective by Steve Hilton, Yankee Group VP from Steve Hilton on Vimeo.

Cisco was keying hard on the importance of small business, not to mention hammering away at its own pet phrase "purpose built," but also reached beyond rhetoric to offer some products and services for small and midsize businesses. Among the SMB offerings that Cisco announced are:

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