Published: August 31st, 2016

Shortly after Nutanix announced the completion of the certification of its hyperconvergence software on Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS), word spread that Cisco had followed that announcement up with the removal of Nutanix from its Solution Partner Program (SPP).

According to a blog post written by Jyoti Kukreja, who heads up worldwide business development at Nutanix, and Steve Kaplan, vice president of client strategy at Nutanix, the decision by Cisco to remove the hyperconvergence leader from the SPP was a surprise.

The duo called into question Cisco’s decision. As noted in an email Cisco distributed to its partners, published in part by The Register, “With the introduction of HyperFlex … technology, Nutanix became a direct competitor of Cisco’s own technology. As a result, Nutanix is no longer part of the Solution Partner Program with UCS, not to confuse the channels, field teams and our customers.”

However, Kukreja and Kaplan claim both Cisco partners and its field salesforce see the opportunity available to them because of the certification of Nutanix on Cisco.

“Cisco field sees the opportunity to partner with Nutanix and unleash opportunities with their customers that have to date been out of bounds,” they wrote. “Additionally, leading Cisco partners across the globe and Cisco sellers are wanting to provide their customers with best-of-class solutions.”

What Kukreja and Kaplan seem to find particularly confusing is that other direct competitors to Cisco have been certified on UCS but have not been removed from the SPP. They noted VMware VSAN as one example of competing software available on UCS.

The suggestion is that Cisco is putting its own interests before its customers’ — a short-sighted move, Kukreja and Kaplan noted.

“Given the support from Cisco’s partners and own sales teams, would Cisco reverse course and re-engage with Nutanix? For the sake of our joint teams, partners, and most importantly for our joint customers, we hope so,” they wrote.