Aryaka Adds to SD-WAN Expo Excitement

January 21, 2020

By Maurice Nagle, Web Editor

According to the IDC, SD-WAN infrastructure is heading toward a market projection of $5.25 billion by 2023, experiencing a CAGR of nearly 31%. The managed SD-WAN arena is pegged for a CAGR north of 60% through 2025, reaching a value of more than $17 billion, per research from Global Market Insights.

In less than a month, SD-WAN industry leadership will converge in Fort Lauderdale, Florida as SD-WAN Expo is poised to bring together the best and brightest in the space. I’ve had the opportunity to catch up with Aryaka’s David Ginsburg – who is participating in the panel discussion “Securing Your WAN” on Wednesday February 12th – before the event festivities kickoff for a bit of a forecast of what to expect at the event, the industry at large and possibly the 2020 election results. Here’s what we discussed.

Maurice Nagle: Please tell us a bit about the latest news at your company.
David Ginsburg: We just celebrated our 10th anniversary this past summer.  During that time, we’ve always offered a global fully-managed

      David Ginsburg

service, but for the first half decade, we referred to it as WAN Optimization as a Service, then Network as a Service, and during the past five years, as SD-WAN.  With an understanding of where the market is going, in November we re-productized our offering into what we now call SmartServices, with separate components that cover the various capabilities that make our offering unique – SmartConnect, for global and regional connectivity as well as Last Mile contracting and monitoring; SmartCloud, for multi-cloud direct connectivity, IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS (News - Alert); SmartOptimize, our patented network and application multi-segment optimization; SmartSecure, for edge and cloud security – SmartInisights, for both configuration management and visibility, what many call co-management since we offer a managed service: SmartManage, our foundation that consists of our global service nodes, our edge appliances, our dedicated Layer 2 WAN, as well as our global orchestration, predictive analytics, and NOCs

This evolved service descriptions and positioning help us to better compete by making more visible our unique capabilities and will also help with our partner community.   The new regional offer will greatly expand our TAM in that previously, we’d only focus on the global rather than regional footprint of our customers.

We also now describe ourselves as ‘The Cloud-First WAN Company.’  Deconstructing this, we’ve offered cloud connectivity from our beginnings, and data and applications originating or destined to the cloud are becoming a greater part of our customers’ use cases.  Cloud-first also associates with the cloud-first consumption model, OPEX instead of CAPEX, consume rather than construct.  By ‘WAN,’ it is looking at the larger WAN transformation objective, and who knows if SD-WAN will still be a descriptor in another five or ten years.  Finally, ‘The’ is the implication that we are the only company to offer a truly integrated offering that combines the technology and the managed service.  We are a leader in this regard.

MN: What pains are you taking away for customers?
DG: Our overarching strategy is to deliver a managed service that removes all complexity from the enterprise.  The service integrates all aspects of a NG-WAN, including connectivity, application optimization, security, multi-cloud connectivity, and visibility.  IT has at their disposal a service that offers the flexibility, simplicity, scale, and change velocity that a Do-it-Yourself (DIY) implementation cannot match.

MN: Is SASE changing the way you and/or your customers operate?  How?
DG: In a short amount of time, many vendors have jumped on the SASE Gartner bandwagon, which some other vendors and analysts have distanced themselves from it.  The SASE premise – that security functions are moving to the cloud – is valid, but even Gartner admits that there are multiple enterprise-specific deployment options that sometimes call for continued ‘heavy’ security stacks at the branch.  Our strategy is to offer enteprises this optionality, where, in conjunction with our security partners Palo Alto (News - Alert), Zscaler, and Symantec, they can leverage the cloud, where in other cases, they may deploy functionality at the branch via a Palo Alto virtual firewall deployed on our SD-WAN edge appliance, which we call the Aryaka Network Access Point (News - Alert), or ANAP.  The objective here is choice, both as to where to deploy the capability, and what vendors to use.  We don’t expect an enterprise who has had a successful relationship with a given security vendor to suddenly jump ship as part of an SD-WAN deployment.  In this vein, we will partner with other Tier 1 security vendors in the future.  Additionally an element of a fully managed, frictionless service, is to provide management of all components. Here, we will manage both physical and virtual security appliances deployed as part of the SD-WAN service.

MN: What is the greatest opportunity for SD-WAN vendors today? 
DG: Delivering a service that aligns with the business pain points of enterprises, versus just focusing on the technology. We are seeing a generational opportunity as many enterprises transition to a network (WAN) consumption model in the same way that they’ve embraced the public cloud.   But, SD-WAN must deliver on its promises.

MN: What is the greatest challenge for SD-WAN vendors today?
DG: Market noise, with some stating that upwards of 75 vendors are messaging SD-WAN in some way – Much like the blind monks who all have a different understanding an elephant.  There are multiple approaches, including DIY, carrier-delivered in conjunction with one or more vendors, as well as the Aryaka integrated approach.  We need to ensure that enterprises don’t experience SD-WAN fatigue or have sub-par deployment experiences based on vendor capability or service over-commitments.  We saw this happen in the SDN datacenter market with many startups.

MN: In 2019, MEF unveiled MEF3.0, how is this impacting your business today, and what does this mean for the future?
DG: Given that we offer a truly integrated service, in that we provide both the underlying technology and also operate the global backbone, we’ve not been involved in many of the discussions, though we exhibited at the last ONUG.  What we’d like to see is a standards framework that embraces both overlay architecture as well as integrated deployments, which we consider superior with regard to SLAs and visibility.  One other issue is that there are still many interpretations as to exactly what SD-WAN is, and if you look at the larger WAN transformation question, what most call SD-WAN is really one element, other of which include the cloud, security, and services.

MN: What’s your biggest SD-WAN takeaway from 2019?
DG: We are seeing a growing acceptance of SD-WAN as a managed service, even amongst larger enterprises with skilled and budgeted IT shops.  This trend parallels what we’ve all experienced as part of public cloud deployments during the last decade.  This OPEX-based network consumption model, delivering additional flexibility, simplicity, and change velocity, parallels the cloud consumption model that has created powerhouses of the likes of AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google (News - Alert) Cloud.

MN: What do you hope to achieve at the event? Why should people come to SD-WAN Expo, ITEXPO and its other collocated #TechSuperShow events to meet with your company?
DG: Enterprises of all sizes are somewhere along their digital transformation journey, and as part of that, the WAN can’t be an inhibitor.  Our cloud-first managed offering offers an advantage for CIOs responsible for this transformation, by offering a consumption-based WAN service that offers greater flexibility, scalability, and simplicity.  It “derisks” their digital and WAN transformation efforts.   Channel partners can also work with Aryaka to deliver to their customers a solution that ensures continued relevance and stickiness.  It permits them to better differentiate against the competition. 

MN: Why should your session be on the list of must-attend sessions at this year’s conference?
DG: Aryaka has worked with global enterprises for just over a decade, solving the more difficult connectivity and application performance problems.  We’re now extending our service to address new regional footprints that will make it appealing to a much larger set of customers as well as the channel partners with whom they work.  On our panels we describe the connectivity and security concerns that arise as part of WAN transformation efforts.

MN: What’s your most off-the-wall tech prediction for 2020?
DG: The 2020 elections won’t be hacked.

Aryaka is poised to ride the success of this maturing market to expanded presence though future-forward thinking and robust innovation to meet customer demands. Join David, Fortinet’s (News - Alert) Kelly Brazil, HughesON’s Nick Coval and WAN Dynamics’ Jason Gintert for an exploration of best practice in WAN security. This and more at SD-WAN Expo! Yes, the FOMO is real.

See you in sunny South Florida!

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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