Cisco is to recruit another 70 to 80 UK resellers to support its drive into the SME market, and will fast-track them through the accreditation process.
The vendor has also changed its financing arrangements to include deals for resellers and small businesses that incorporate purchases from other vendors.
Cisco admitted that its SME offerings have languished in the past as it devoted more energy to its "high-touch, high-end channel". The company has also promised a range of new SME-specific products.
"We have now recruited 70 SME-focused resellers and are putting emphasis on looking for those with voice skills," said Phil Sorsky, an operations director at Cisco.
"We're about halfway through the recruitment programme at the moment so there is a window of opportunity for resellers to get on board. We are setting the cap at 150 resellers in total."
Sorsky said SME products had always been "a relatively small percentage of turnover".
"I feel we have never done as well as we could in the SME market," he said. "Staffing and functionality for the SME reseller and end-user have not been as attractive as they could be in the past. We've recently changed that."
Sorsky and Sarah Berry, SME sales manager at Cisco, were keen to separate the low-end products sold by Cisco-owned Linksys from those offered by Cisco's SME division.
"We have released SME-specific products such as Call Manager Express," said Berry. "There's a lot more to come from Cisco in the area of mid-market and SME products."
Kevin Vine, director of networking services at Ingram Micro, said the distributor had seen Cisco make a big push for UK SMEs, and the vendor's fast-track accreditations had made it easy for resellers to sign up.
"The more power and marketing clout Cisco can bring to this, the better for everyone," said Vine. "Brand awareness always helps, and Cisco's brand is strong. This makes it easy for us to bring in resellers, and for the resellers to sell to customers."
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