Marking its 30th anniversary this year, the Interop conference and expo is returning to its roots with a renewed focus on networking, according to Interop vice president and general manager Jennifer Jessup.

The conference is scheduled to kick off Monday at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center in Las Vegas, and will run from May 2-6. The expo, meanwhile, will be open May 4-5.

After a post-2008 shift away from networking to a greater focus on business technology in general, Interop this year "pledges to embrace the network and the technologies that feed off of it," Jessup wrote in an online note to attendees. The return to a networking focus is being driven by several major trends, including the rise of cloud computing and the Internet of Things, she said.

Exhibitors Include Cisco, IBM, VMware

Following the 2007-2008 economic meltdown, networking for a time "stood for the particularly unsexy switches and routers that have been commoditized since the mid-2000s," Jessup said. With the rise of software-defined networking, however, the concept today is "cool" and "essential," she added.

Among the keynote speakers at this year's Las Vegas Interop are Martin Casado, general partner at Andreessen Horowitz; Cathy Polinsky, vice president of engineering for search at Salesforce; Jeff Reed, senior vice president for enterprise infrastructure and solutions at Cisco; and Amin Vahdat, networking technical lead at Google and a Google Fellow.

Throughout the five-day conference, sessions and talks will focus on several different tracks, including applications, security, wireless and mobility, and virtualization and data center. The two-day expo will feature exhibits by Cisco, Cox Business, Cylance, Dell, IBM, Netgear, Spirent Communications and VMware, among others.

Next Big Thing: IoT

A number of special events and exhibit areas are also planned for this year's Interop. Startup companies, for instance, will be featured in a new Startup City area at the expo. Representatives from four startups will participate in "Startup Hot Seat" sessions where they will each have eight minutes to describe their offerings to an expert panel.

At the expo on Wednesday and Thursday, an InteropNet Demo Lab team will give live demonstrations of middleware, interoperability and standardization technologies for the enterprise Internet of Things. Winners from a field of 30 recently named finalists will also be announced in several categories for the 2016 Best of Interop Awards.

Two days of Interop Summits are planned for Monday and Tuesday to provide attendees with information about the potential for developing technologies in networking, containers, cybersecurity, DevOps and other areas. On the same days, Interop will also host an Elite 100 Conference, as a co-located event at the Four Seasons.

"Internet of Things is the next market set to explode -- IoT becomes a reality only through the network of data between devices, sensors and systems," Jessup said in her Interop note. "[The] bottom line is networking now requires new skills and new technologies. Interop can be poised to grab the market resurgence."

Interop Exhibitor List

Wondering who will be exhibiting at Interop and where to find them? We've got the A-Z list of exhibitors and booth numbers right here:

Accelerated Concepts (847), AdRem Software (849), (160B), Agrabase (1052), AIC (1145), AireSpring (1045), Akamai (117), Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise (423), Alert Logic (851)

Ambedded Technology (160G), American Express (1123), American National Standards Institute (809), APC by Schneider Electric (329), App Formix (160H), AppNeta (1108), Apptrify (806), Aryaka (228), AT&T (713)

ATOP Corporation (836B), Avanan (953), Axis Communications (316), BeaconGrid (160I), BooleBox (457), Bosch Security Systems USA (844), CBT Nuggest (444), China Telecom Americas (652), Ciena (1033), Cisco (105)

ClearBridge Technology Group (912), Cloud Connect China (438), CloudGenix (345), Code42 (644), CollabNet (1004), Comcast Business (429), Coolan (160A), Corning Optical Communications (756), Cox Business (123), CyberPower Systems (1115)

Cylance (949), Data Communication Technology Ltd (133), Dell (828), Diligent Corporation (1104), DisplayLing (136), DisplayNote Technologies (1012), DMTF (341), Dreamztech (1027), Druva (716), Dyn (724)

ELFIQ Networks (611), EnGenius Technologyies (659), Enzu (131), Eoptolink Technology (355), ESET (1105), ExtraHop Networks (741), Extreme Networks (437), Fiber Mountain (144), FileWave Endpoint Management (623), for Business (255)

Global Knowledge (707), GreeNet (1150), Highfive (322), Hiperwall (1211), Hitachi ID Systems (845), HOB (747), Hongan Group Co (628C), Huawei Enterprise USA (445), Hunan Guanglian Photoelectricity Technologies (836A), I.T.S. Consulting Services (647)

IBM (440), Identity Automation (1139), iDrive Inc. (557), IEEE Computer Society (354), INE (1008), Infinera (129), Infoquick Global Connection Tech (139), InfoSiftr (648), Innodisk USA (759) Inphi Corporation (MR12)

International Computer Concepts (859), InVue Security Products (344), JumpCloud (1144), Kalray (350), Keeper Security (454), Kentik (160D), Konica Minolta Business Innovation Center (813), Lantronix (545), LeaseWeb (1025), Level4 Hardware (237)

Lintel Technologies (646), LiquidPlanner (604), LiveAction (1129), LogicVein (1149), ManageEngine (636), Meikyo Electric Co (340), Metmako (710), MobiDev (945), ModuleTek (238), Monnit (1021)

Monoprice (330), MovinCool (458), NBASE-T Alliance (936), NCP Engineering (946), NEC Corporation of America (451), NetBeez (160J), Netgate (744), NetGear (617), Netreo (229), NetSupport (450)

New Horizons Computer Learning Centers (1037), NGINX (553), Ningbo Shunsheng (141), NSA - National Security Agency (1106), OEM Production Inc. (1048), Omnitron Systems Technology (709), OnRamp (351), Opengear (1044), OSI Hardware (122), OutPost Sentinel (712)

Outsource Quality Assured (1053), PacketViper (944), Pasessler AG (549), PathSolutions (722), Pluribus Networks (1030), Portnox (914), PrinterLogic (2510), Processor (1133), ProLabs (328), PROMISE Technology (857)

PSSC Labs (244), Puppet (1000), QLogic (856), QuickCert (657), Rack Solutions (1132), Raritan (1117), Revolabs (1050), Rose Electronics (128), Ruckus Wireless (231), Sangfor (801)

ScaleArc (908), SecureAuth (1005), Sensaphone (701), Server Technology (116), ServerLIFT (500), Sharp-N-Flat (658), Shenzhen Aoputewang Technology (628A), Shenzhen C-Light Network Communication Co (836C), Shenzhen SDG Information Co (836D)

Shenzhen Sopto Technology (628B), Shenzhen TG-NET (240), Shuttle Computer Group (746), Sichuan Hone Technology (913), Sichuan Yuantong Communication (915), SimbirSoft (1019), SimpleWan (160C), SitScape (1141), SmartFile (223), SmartOptics (1047)

SMI Co (1031), Soha Systems (160F), Somansa (745), Spirent Communications (805), SQ-Electronics (1102), StayOnline (232), Stratodesk (347), Sunesys (1101), Super Micro Computer Inc (757), Synology America Corp (417)

TalariaX Pte (804), TechnologyAdvice (337), Telecom Brokers (401), Titania (1136), Toshiba International (905), Transcender (808), Uila (353), Ultimate Solutions (245), University of Denver (904), Ustream (1013)

Veeam Software (236), Velocloud (705), Veriato (846), Viptela (336), VMTurbo (656), VMware (600, 405), WatchGuard (728), Wuhan RayOptek (628D), XCom Global (140), Xena Networks (1126)

XGIGA Communication Technology (628E), YumaWorks (241), Zentera Systems (645), Zhangjiagang Twentsche Cable (137), Zoom (931), ZPE Systems (951), 10Gtek Transceivers (947), 21Vianet Group (907).