As Citrix CEO, David Henshall, recently explained to CNBC, Citrix has laid out a strategy to help customers adopt cloud services in a hybrid fashion at a pace that suits them. Citrix, as a business, is well ahead of its original trajectory, as outlined in our Q218 results. Overall, in the first half of 2018, Citrix UKI has delivered very pleasing year-on-year growth too — in line with EMEA and global results — with some fantastic deals signed. SITA is one such example. As an organisation, its strategic goal is to transform air travel through technology. Citrix Cloud on Microsoft Azure, with a Citrix managed service, is now at the very heart of that goal.

Since joining Citrix exactly one year ago, I’ve been focused on taking our very-established UKI business back to the basics of sales execution. We’ve put the customer first, whilst at the same time creating a positive culture where individuals are motivated and empowered to do their best work. It’s proven a remarkable recipe for success. For me, sales is very much a team sport, and as Managing Director of UKI, my business mantra is always that individuals must come together and work as one. As well as focusing intently on the day-to-day business cadence, I’ve also focused on introducing fun, team-building activities.

Earlier this year, for example, members of the Citrix UK sales and engineering teams pitched for seed funding in the Princes Trust Million Makers programme. In true Dragon’s Den style, after a successful pitch, our Citrix team secured £1,500 of seed funding to kick-start its fundraising initiatives for which a target of £50,000 has been set. Participating in Million Makers has provided individuals with opportunities to challenge themselves, grow, network and do something different to their day job, working with different skillsets and individuals at all levels across the business, whilst having lots of fun in the process.

In the first half of this year, we created a ‘public sector’ vertical for the first time at Citrix, with a dedicated team to manage it. In the space of just a few months this has already delivered strong success in the healthcare, local government and education sectors, particularly. Other sectors that have also performed very well for us in H1 have been finance and insurance, and we have recently closed a significant deal with a multinational investment bank, which we are looking forward to seeing through to completion. Interest in Citrix has been strong across the entire product portfolio, from our subscription-based cloud proposition, through to our networking offering, which has also delivered equally impressive performance.

From a channel perspective, our strategic partnership with Microsoft has enjoyed phenomenal growth recently, creating many new opportunities in both directions, including new license opportunities for Citrix. The alliance has become very programmatic for us in the UKI with solid engagement between the two teams. Above all, the partnership’s growth is enabling us to have more ‘built in the cloud’ conversations, which is very much at the centre of everything that we are doing now.

Looking ahead to the next six to twelve months, we will continue to build a more vertical-led approach, looking at how we can scale more deeply into the public sector particularly. Ultimately, we want to get closer to the customer, understanding their sector-specific requirements and processes and engaging more frequently with the c-suite, so that we are increasingly involved in top-level financial and business planning.

Thanks to all my UKI team and partners for your hard work and contributions to our excellent first half results.

With that, here’s to a glorious rest of summer, and a successful second half of the year.