Cisco channel distribution partner Comstor has signed a distribution agreement with rival networking vendor Expand Networks, and has confirmed that more deals are on the way.
"We are looking to diversify our portfolio which will involve more non-Cisco products, but only in areas that Cisco does not cover," said Paul Cunningham, marketing director at Comstor.
He added that Cisco can lag behind smaller, more agile firms in getting into niche markets, but in the long term it can get into them by acquisition or R&D.
Cunningham explained that the return on investment proposition provided by Expand's products was a key factor in Comstor's decision to sign the vendor.
"The product offers businesses improved bandwidth performance with the existing network," he said.
Mark O'Hara, director at reseller Hydra, which buys product from Comstor, said: "Cisco has commoditised its own market. It's almost impossible to make money selling Cisco unless you're a Gold Partner.
"Money is made in the performance-enhancing products, and not the routers and switches these days."
Nick Watson, head of unified channels at Cisco UK, hinted that the vendor might bring out its own competitive acceleration product in the future.
"From time to time there will be niche areas where we do not have a product, and we recognise Comstor's need to address this," he said.
Expand's complete range of network accelerator products and services will now be available via the distributor.
Scott Dobson, sales director, EMEA, at Expand, explained that the deal will give the firm access to Cisco business partners.
"We have not been able to penetrate these large value added resellers and system integrators in the past," he said.
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View photos of last night's awards ceremony in London
View photos of all the winners from the 2018 Channel Awards
After a glittering awards evening in Battersea celebrating 25 years of the Awards, we are pleased to share the list of winners and judges' commended winners