Timeline to war: HP and Cisco

  • Finally, enough was enough. Cisco and HP [[artnid:336911|announced on the 20th February|new]] that they were formally ending their partnership. Effective from April 30, HP lost its Cisco Certified channel partner and Global Service Alliance partner status. At the time, Cisco senior vice-president of Cisco’s worldwide partner organisation, Keith Goodwin said "Being a Cisco Certified Channel Partner has numerous benefits including access to proprietary information (such as product roadmaps) and partner profitability initiatives."

  • In [[artnid:274889|January 2009,]] the early signs of a fallout were there. HP made a number of announcements around its ProCurve networking arm that brought it more into the enterprise space, and into conflict on Cisco’s home turf. Cisco, meanwhile, was preparing to enter the blade server market – HP’s datacentre turf.

  • HP responded. [[artnid:344556|At its partner conference,|new]] it threw down the gauntlet and made a clear outline on how it would compete directly with Cisco. The battle lines were drawn.

  • The acquisition also caused the growing rivalry between Cisco and HP to spill into new territories. Through 3Com, [[artnid:326053|HP gained greater access to the Chinese market.|new]]

  • HP struck another blow to the relationship when it announced it would [[artnid:325960|acquire 3Com for $US2.7 billion.|new]] HP’s Ethernet switching portfolio, at the time, was already a growing competitor to Cisco. The acquisition made it more so.

  • In October, Cisco rival, Brocade, was rumoured to be up for sale. Who was listed as a likely buyer? [[artnid:320989|Amongst others, HP.|new]]

  • Cisco’s Unified Computing System (UCS) [[artnid:280393|announcement in March 2009|new]] brought it directly into competition in the server market with IBM and HP. At the time in a blog posting, Cisco CTO, Padmasree Warrior acknowledged this will lead Cisco to compete with some of its partners.

  • When Cisco and HP ran their recent global partner conferences, it was a coincidence that they were on the same time – or was it? The two behemoths, and former partners, have been throwing jabs at one another in the past years, which lead to their dramatic split late last year.

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