New Talari CEO Q&A: Circuit Flexibility Key to SD-WAN Success


…private company again. My lesson learned is that if you really have the products that are high quality and you’ve built a multiyear relationship with your channel, you can grow. You can grow in a big, growing market and be very successful and very profitable. I think it’s very hard to see accelerated growth without leveraging the channel in high complex infrastructure products. You can do it, but it’s not done easily, and it’s harder to leverage.

CP: Is there anything else you want to add?

PS: I think one question that we get asked a bit about is, ‘Is the SD-WAN market one big market?’ And I think the answer is, not really. I think that if you look at how the SD-WAN market can be segemented, which I think would be very helpful for different customers, you can kind of look at it in the following way. Some number of SD-WAN products are bought directly by enterprise. Those tend to be big shops that have a lot of their own IT resources, their own INO, a WAN group and things of that nature. And there’s going to be a fairly significant play for the large companies, whether they buy through a VAR or buy directly.

But the other big piece of the market is going to be the products that are bought by the service providers and provided to the enterprises. It kind of splits almost evenly, in my opinion, as to the two market segments. Enterprise is buying directly or products being bought by service providers.

Service providers come in two flavors in the SD-WAN market. One segment are the telcos that own the circuits or vendors that have aligned with a telco and fixed customers to a single type of circuit. You’ve got companies that have alignments, and you go to the service provider and they’re going to provision you your bandwidth, the equipment — they’re going to do it all. The other part of the service market is the more traditional MSP market, where they’re agnostic as to what circuit they’re going to provision. They’re going to shop around. They’re going to choose what you connect to based on price and quality. And if their end user decides that a particular vendor for the circuit is not quality or too expensive, they have the ability to move that enterprise off. A lot of power will go to the MSPs or the managed network service providers who don’t have a fixed alignment with a telco. And that we think is going to be a strong part of the marketplace that helps companies drive costs down, because you keep the purchasing power in the hands of that enterprise even when it’s done through the MSP.

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