SD-WAN Demand Upsets Market, Drives Acquisition and Development

January 27, 2016

By Susan J. Campbell, SD-WAN Contributing Editor

The demand for streamlined network operations doesn’t tend to wane. In fact, the advancements in capabilities, agility and reach are helping companies to create environments where the network can deliver better access and processing power than ever before. Thanks to continued developments in SD-WAN, it’s only expected to continue improving.

Companies like CloudGenix are paving the way in WAN development. Its ION takes development to the software front and replaces the fragmentation that tends to be inherent in current networking. With a centralized control pane, intelligence is coupled with policy-based language to create a lightweight, instant-on network with elasticity, reduced costs and vendor independence.

Riverbed (News - Alert) is one company hoping to be one of the first that comes to mind when companies think SD-WAN. To help accelerate its timeline, the company recently acquired Ocedo. Riverbed has a long and proven reputation for private WAN with its flagship product, Steelhead. When it comes to WAN optimization, Riverbed has long enjoyed its positioning as the market leader. As demand has shifted to focus on the evolution of SD-WANs, it was time for Riverbed to respond.

Even with this purchase, however, Riverbed is not first to market to respond to the demand. The SD-WAN space, according to this Network World (News - Alert) piece, has been a hot spot for startups as traditional vendors were simply slow to respond. Riverbed first demonstrated a move in this direction with Project Tiger, a multi-step journey to a SD-WAN solution. The first phase is due in the middle of this year. Now, the company has accelerated its positioning with the acquisition of Ocedo.

The German-based SD-WAN vendor was founded in 2013, yet has enjoyed significant momentum in just a short period of time. Ocedo already has roughly 70 enterprise and carrier customers with resellers in Europe and Asia-Pacific. While there is some overlap with Project Tiger, Riverbed anticipates the move should help it reach its goal of enabling zero-touch provisioning. With this transaction, Riverbed’s SD-WAN launch in the first quarter will combine Ocedo with the DPI capabilities, VPN and quality of service Riverside brings to market.

This move is considered a solid one for Riverbed as the industry is evolving. Corporate WANs are evolving, moving away from rigid, static networks that tend to support overly complicated branches. The focus now is on software-defined models where orchestration and automation bring a whole new level of agility to the table. Riverbed is positioning itself to catch up quickly in an area where it really has been late to market. The company’s evolution from there will determine its sustainability for the long-term.

Edited by Kyle Piscioniere

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