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SD-WAN Roundup: MetTel, Aryaka Celebrate Anniversaries; Riverbed Gets New CEO

Champagne Toast

Investing in SD-WAN has paid major dividends over the years for partners and vendors alike.

Take for example Aryaka Networks, which recently turned 10 years old.

Aryaka's Matt Carter

Aryaka’s Matt Carter

CEO Matt Carter said SD-WAN has changed drastically ways since the San Mateo, California-based vendor launched in 2009. He said more customer conversations center around cloud connectivity and securing that cloud connectivity. And SD-WAN itself has become much more popular.

“When the company started, it was an interesting sort of technology going up against the incumbent network [MPLS],” Carter told Channel Partners. “Now today SD-WAN has sort of moved into the mainstream conversation around network architecture on a global basis.”

Carter previously worked for Sprint. The carrier had been selling MPLS largely through a direct sales force, but it became clear around five years ago that the niche SD-WAN technology was drawing eyeballs — especially partner eyeballs.

“They were not going to kill the golden goose at the time — the business that was paying them a lot of money [MPLS]. But at the same time, they had had another offering that gave them something to go talk to their customers with,” Carter said.

Carter said partners also are interested in selling a managed service rather than a boxed solution. He said customers are interested in outsourcing the network to a company that provides an end-to-end solution.

“There’s this managed service piece, which requires a little bit more time to sell, but it’s that side of the market that’s actually growing. And that’s why we’re seeing a lot channel partners really beginning to embrace the managed service differentiation,” Carter said.

Aryaka has transformed itself in multiple ways this year, including a large C-suite refresh. The company has also made in-roads with the public cloud, joining the Microsoft Azure MSP Program and integrating with Oracle Cloud.

MetTel

MetTel celebrated the fifth anniversary of signing on as VeloCloud’s first carrier partner. Ed Fox, MetTel’s chief technology officer, said his company chose between Viptela (now owned by Cisco) and Glue Networks (now Gluware).

MetTel still reaps the benefits of partnering with a vendor that has time and time again scored at the top of SD-WAN leaderboards. And the decision to invest in the technology itself has proven indispensable.

MetTel’s Ed Fox

“Today there’s not a meeting we go into where someone’s not mentioning SD-WAN,” he told Channel Partners.

Fox said SD-WAN leads to a massive increase in revenue per customer. One client, for example, eventually bought 14 products from MetTel after accepting the carrier’s SD-WAN RFP. An agent brought in the 3,000-site customer. Fox said SD-WAN opens the door to sell more services.

“We will provide the broadband. We will provide the MPLS. We’ll provide the 4G backup because we’re an MVNO for AT&T, Verizon and Sprint, and we’re already interconnected with their network. We’ll provide the cloud firewall. We’ll layer over our voice services so they don’t necessarily need to have two networks anymore,” he said.

Fox said MetTel’s SD-WAN conversations are going …

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