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Cisco unveils digital acceleration tools for Asia-Pacific SMBs
Thu, 28th Dec 2023

Cisco, the global expert in networking and cybersecurity technology, has unveiled new security products and networking solutions designed to help small-to-median businesses (SMBs) in Asia-Pacific in their digital acceleration journey.

Announced at Cisco Live Melbourne, the Cisco Catalyst 1200 and 1300 Series switches and Cisco Meraki MX aim to simplify and expedite network and security setup to meet the specific requirements and budget of the SMB segment.

"Now more than ever, small businesses are facing a pace of change unlike ever before," noted Hana Raja, Managing Director, Cisco Malaysia. She added that these businesses need to tackle increasingly tech-savvy customers demanding seamless digital experiences and must also fortify their enterprise against a broadening threat landscape.

"We believe that there is an opportunity to provide them with a simpler network and security management platform experience to help them accelerate their digital journeys without the worry of complexity so they can focus on what matters most, growing their business," remarked Raja.

Cisco's new developments promise to bolster Malaysia's economy, wherein SMBs play a crucial role, contributing 38% to the country's total gross domestic product (GDP).

The Catalyst 1200 and 1300 Series aim to streamline network setup for SMBs, offering the secure connectivity that's critical to speeding up their digitisation paths. These switches, which can be deployed on-premise or as cloud-based managed solutions, ease SMBs’ adoption of technology and help them seize the benefits of digitisation.

The Cisco Business Dashboard, a centralised network management tool, conveniently handles the new catalyst switches. It reduces the complexity of managing a business network by automating the lifecycle management, deployment, and monitoring of networking devices. The Cisco Business mobile app can further simplify setup and management.

Cisco also introduced the Meraki MX, an integrated solution for security and SD-WAN that caters to SMBs' pressing cybersecurity needs. With various capabilities, including an application-based firewall, content filtering, threat protection, Cellular failover, VPN, web application VoIP health and more, the Meraki MX simplifies installation and remote management with its fully cloud-managed setup.

The Meraki MX comes pre-equipped with ThousandEyes Enterprise Agents, promising operations teams in-depth insights into SaaS performance and the health of the underlying network. This enables them to rectify issues affecting both users and sites, and handles the increased connectivity complexities introduced by SaaS applications, network growth, and third-party services.

Cisco also introduced MSP Express for SMB, a selection of scalable Managed Services which partners can build and offer to SMBs across the region. This new offering provides SMBs with flexibility in how they adopt technology based on their capital allocation priorities. "The SMB segment is a significant area of investment and focus for Cisco, especially in Asia-Pacific," said Michiko Kamata, Managing Director SMB and Distributions Sales, Cisco APJC.

This initiative aligns with Cisco's goal of working with partners to serve SMB customers better, through a new bespoke Cisco Partner Journey for SMB partners. "This initiative consolidates content, resources and tools across Cisco to enable our partners to help deliver the best outcomes for the SMB customers across the region," Kamata concluded.