On Wednesday I shared my excitement about our new multi-year strategic alliance with Cisco to enhance the delivery of rich, media-enabled virtual desktops over the network. I couldn’t be more excited about the innovations that will come from bringing together the best minds in desktop virtualization at Citrix, with the thought leaders in networking, voice, video and datacenter technologies at Cisco.

The impact of this alliance was demonstrated almost immediately by Cisco’s announcement of the Cisco VXI with Citrix XenDesktop® solution, and the new Cisco Wide Area Application Services™ (WAAS) optimized for Citrix XenDesktop and Citrix HDX™ technology (the first of many such innovations that will come from this alliance). Judging from the reactions I’ve heard from customers so far, they’re equally excited about the benefits of enabling Cisco networks to deliver a great experience for Citrix virtual desktops and apps. No matter how you look at it, this is a big deal.

As enthusiastic as I am about our new Cisco partnership, an important part of our strategy at Citrix is to ensure a great experience for customers as they deliver virtual desktops and apps over ANY network to ANY device. Doing this means constantly challenging ourselves to come up with innovations that push the envelope in creative new ways, and making sure they are available as core features in our own products.

Today’s announcement of our new WAN optimization service for the NetScaler SDX platform is a great example. For the first time, Citrix customers will be able to run our own Branch Repeater solution as a virtual service directly on a Citrix NetScaler appliance. One solution running multiple, virtualized services, all leveraging a common management console.  All at amazing levels of performance and throughput. It is a great new solution for Citrix customers, and a key part of our relentless focus on ensuring that every Citrix customer can deliver a great experience to every user… regardless of network, platform, device or hypervisor.


This in no way diminishes our enthusiasm for Cisco VXI solution and the unique differentiated value it offers customers. As anyone who’s been around this industry for a while knows, Citrix has a pretty remarkable track record when it comes to “enlightened” partnering. That’s because we constantly remind ourselves that it’s not about us, it’s about the customer.

As I noted in my last post, the main reason Cisco and Citrix have built such a strong partnership is because of the common culture of focusing on the customer first. That’s not just marketing speak. I spent 10 years at Cisco before joining Citrix, and I can tell you from personal experience that this “customer first” mindset is woven into the DNA of both companies, creating a dynamic that’s crystal clear in everything we do together. That kind of focus rare in this industry, but it’s the secret to “enlightened partnerships” that stand the test of time. Any time large, successful companies partner, there will be some technologies that overlap.  When both sides focus on customer success as the #1 goal, those issues tend to fade to the background.

Cisco and Citrix also share a strong belief that “innovation feeds innovation”. When great engineers and developers see exciting new ideas from others, it challenges them to approach their own problems in new ways, and ask themselves how they can up the ante in the products they are responsible for. We believe that will happen here as we continue to work together – and independently – to offer a range of differentiated solutions for our respective customers.

Approaching partnerships in this way promotes innovation, choice and better user experiences for customers. At the end of the day, when customers win, we all win.

Simon Hayes

VP Strategic Alliances, Citrix