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Windstream Makes Security Vendor Fortinet Second SD-WAN Partner

SDN

Windstream Enterprise, the business communications giant, is expanding its software-defined wide area networking (SD-WAN) portfolio to include Fortinet as a second technology partner.

Windstream executives describe the new partnership as an opportunity for partners and customers to add an SD-WAN offering with a built-in next-generation firewall. The carrier-agnostic SD-WAN capabilities sit on Fortinet’s “next-gen firewall” edge device.

Windstream's Mike Frane

Windstream’s Mike Frane

“Business customers are increasingly looking for security that is native to their WAN,” said Mike Frane, vice president of product management at Windstream Enterprise. “The Fortinet SD-WAN technology is particularly attractive due to its security pedigree. It complements our offer, broadening its appeal to customers at all levels of the enterprise spectrum.”

The Arkansas-based carrier has been offering an SD-WAN platform since 2017. Windstream continues to tout the the VeloCloud-powered offering as an alternative to MPLS and a strategic growth opportunity for the corporation.

Fortinet's John Maddison

Fortinet’s John Maddison

“Windstream’s proven market leadership in the SD-WAN space is now complemented by Fortinet’s brand recognition and leadership in the security marketplace,” said John Maddison, executive vice president, products and solutions at Fortinet. “With a FortiGate option for Windstream Enterprise SD-WAN, customers have access to unparalleled security combined with leading WAN technology in a single offering.”

Fortinet pivoted hard into SD-WAN last year, along with some of its cybersecurity peers. These companies argue that SD-WAN and security are best delivered in a single box.

“Fortinet Secure SD-WAN arms MSSPs with an irresistible value proposition … by upending the conventional approach to providing SD-WAN services by making traditional SD-WAN service providers redundant and including security as an integral part of any SD-WAN offering rather than an add-on,” Fortinet’s senior director of MSSP and service enablement told Channel Futures last November.

Fortinet announced a new software-defined branch (SD-branch) solution earlier this month. Channel Futures reported the goal is to combine SD-WAN, switching, secure Wi-Fi and network access control.


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