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SD-WAN Roundup: QOS Networks on M&A, 5G and the End of ‘Branch-Based’ SD-WAN

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… play an even bigger role in SD-WAN purchasing.

“There’s going to come a time in the near future when a customer is going to say, ‘Network security is equally as important as my network performance,'” he said. “I might buy for performance today, but I might have some reasonable needs to buy for security tomorrow. I want to make sure my security guys have the ability to roll something out in a seamless fashion and not have to rip apart the WAN that I put in.’”

QOS

We caught up with QOS a year ago after it landed its first government customer. The company has deployed 34,000 appliances to customers in about 40 countries. It sells directly and through the agent channel, and it also supports CenturyLink and AT&T.

The company two months ago announced a funding round from a private equity firm. While QOS regards itself as the leader in MSP SD-WAN, Cittadino said the new funds will help the company scale to compete with the likes of Windstream and MetTel.

“Not being a multibillion-dollar company like them and having funded the business from the ground up three or four years ago, we said it’s probably time to bring in institutional capital and really start to widen our stance at the network edge. Start to go out of the branch and into end user.”

Cittadino said the company is adopting an “acquisitive” posture for the next year 20-36 months. While the company is aiming for 50% yearly organic growth, Cittadino said his team will be looking for ancillary purchases that give the end user extra value.

SD-WAN M&A

The SD-WAN industry has ramped up consolidation in 2020. Whereas the acquisitions of Viptela, VeloCloud and Talari took place over a year-and-a-half, we seen vendors gobble up CloudGenix, Silver Peak and 128 Technology within the span of seven months this year.

Cittadino voiced his confusion over HPE’s decision to buy Silver Peak for $925 million. Cittadino said HPE lacked a strong networking footprint outside of its Aruba unit and paid too much.

“They don’t get a good enterprise roster of customers, and they don’t have a product that scales extremely well. Oh, and it’s very expensive, and the hardware is bifurcated from the software. But you paid two times that of VeloCloud [$449 million], who’s the clear market leader,” he said.

Security has played a big role in these 2020 acquisitions and will play a bigger role in the future, according to Cittadino. Take for instance Palo Alto Networks, which bought CloudGenix. Cittadino said many security vendors reacted to customers replacing their edge firewalls with SD-WAN. On the other hand, companies like VMware and Cisco that already bought SD-WAN are looking to build more security into their offerings. Meanwhile, Cato Networks promises to provide centralized management of both security and network.

Versa Partnership

Versa Networks has expanded its international footprint through two partnerships.

First, Versa has lent its SD-WAN and SASE services to OmniClouds‘ software-defined networking (SDN) network platform in an agreement that bolsters OmniCloud’s services in Middle East and Africa. The cloud service provider will use Versa as an overlay for its connectivity sources while providing “full hybrid cloud connectivity.”

Second, Versa teamed up with MCM Telecom, a Mexican service provider. As a result, MCM and its customers get access to advanced network routing.

Versa recently landed in the “Leaders” category of the Gartner WAN Edge Magic Quadrant.

Quick Hits

  • Windstream Enterprise enhanced its customer portal to give users more visibility into their networks. The enhanced WE Connect Insight Engine lets businesses better analyze their SD-WAN environment. See Windstream’s announcement.
  • Cisco and Wipro teamed up to deliver SD-WAN to a major Japanese manufacturer. See their press release.
  • U.K. telco BT is harnessing VMware’s SD-WAN solution. BT is utilizing VMware SD-WAN as part of a larger, “cloud-optimised” managed network service. Check out the announcement.
  • Distributor Ingram Micro signed an agreement with the SASE provider iBoss.
  • We recently wrote about Cato Networks’ ambitious plans to increase its headcount. Another large funding round is enabling the expansion. Read our article.

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