When Gartner Declares You a Visionary Company – What Do You Do Next?

We are thrilled to be named a Visionary in Gartner’s 2019 Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure.

Aryaka was founded in 2009 by a group of visionary entrepreneurs who foresaw the importance of a managed wide area network delivered as a consumable service. The focus was on operational simplicity and a highly responsive infrastructure experience that was constantly in tune with the demands of the business. Interestingly, this was before the notion of clouds became mainstream and much before SD-WAN as a terminology was invented.

We need to highlight the fact that Aryaka is the only managed services vendor included in this year’s MQ for WAN Edge Infrastructure. It’s exciting to see that Gartner agrees with our cloud-first as-a-Service approach to networking and it is also a testament to our customers who embarked on this journey with us some 10 years ago. Allowing our customers to focus on business intent rather than on painstakingly planning, operating and constantly troubleshooting their do-it-yourself infrastructures has been our vision since the company’s inception.

So, what does it mean to be a visionary according to Gartner? “Visionaries have demonstrated an ability to increase the features in their offerings to provide a unique and differentiated approach to the market. A visionary has innovated in one or more of the key areas of data center infrastructure, such as management (including virtualization), security (including policy enforcement), SDN and operational efficiency, and cost reductions.”

We couldn’t be happier to be recognized. To us, it means our company vision has paid off. We’ve created a culture of visionaries through inquisitive, innovative and bold leadership, and these same traits are seen in both our philosophy and our technology.

We are proud that Gartner recognized our strengths, namely:

  • “Aryaka provides an all-in-one SD-WAN, private backbone and managed service solution, making procurement easier for customers interested in that model”
  • “The private global backbone, with direct cloud gateways offered by Aryaka, provides a solution to optimize application performance
  • “Aryaka’s SD-WAN includes WAN optimization, to boost application performance, especially over long distances”

While we will continue to build on these strengths, we will also work diligently to improve any perceived weaknesses. We can walk and chew gum at the same time.

So, let us look at the cautions Gartner mentions and address them here:    

  • “Aryaka only supports internet and Ethernet connections to its services, limiting hybrid SD-WAN configurations and making migrations from MPLS more complex”

Our reaction to this is that while we help companies that are familiar and have established expertise with MPLS – note that most of our customers had and some still have MPLS in their networks, so we can co-exist – we recently announced a HybridWAN solution to provide a more flexible experience. (Hear directly from our customer Teradyne about our HybridWAN offering in an on-demand webinar). This puts us in a position to offer even more flexibility and options for our customers. Expect more innovation in WAN access technologies over the next few months.

  • “Enterprises with footprints limited to a single country/smaller area or are too far from an Aryaka point of presence (PoP), will not benefit as much from the Aryaka backbone and WAN optimization features”

As we embarked on our journey, our original focus was on global reach. But as we execute on our vision and expand our footprint, you will see us broadening the appeal of our solution.  With technologies such as HybridWAN or our new Regional offer, we now provide innovative ways to cost-effectively harness the performance benefits of our solution not only globally, but also regionally and for smaller deployments.

  • “SmartConnect is a managed service that will not appeal to those enterprises that prefer to manage their own SD-WAN networks (DIY clients)”

Indeed, this is true. However, the criteria is at-odds with our managed services vision. But, see below:

      • While many companies have deep networking expertise and skilled network engineers, network architects have grown tired of spending 70% of their time on “keeping the lights on,” leaving little time for them to participate in enterprise architecture strategy and business relevance discussions.
      • Many of our customers have deep network expertise and our solution architects carry out deep expert-level discussions. But many prefer to declare their network design strategy based on overall intent. For this, we offer the MyAryaka Cloud Portal for full end-to-end visibility as well as full configuration capabilities. The latter means you have much of the control of a DIY solution while still enjoying the benefits of a managed solution.
      • The points above do in fact align with Gartner’s prediction of SD-WAN managed services growth, with an expected CAGR of 76% between 2017 and 2023, significantly outpacing the growth of DIY solutions.

Our managed service removes complexity from the WAN, a key challenge identified in our Third Annual 2019 State of the WAN report, freeing IT to focus on more forward-looking initiatives such as digital transformation.

And so, with “our customers come first” mindset: what’s next?

Being declared a visionary by Gartner is a huge validation of our differentiated approach to the SD-WAN market. But ultimately, the biggest testament is what this approach means to our customers. As more and more organizations embrace web-scale IT, we expect to keep pushing the technology forward — always striving for a better network. We will continue to build on our vision, keep innovating and executing to be a leader, not only meet Gartner’s expectations, but those of our customers to meet their network and business needs.

Additional Resources

About the Author

Paul Liesenberg

Paul is a Senior Manager in Aryaka’s Product Marketing Team. Paul has over 20 years of experience in product marketing, product management, sales engineering, business development and software engineering in Cisco, LiveAction, Bivio Networks and StrataCom. Paul enjoys scuba diving, motorcycles, open software projects and oil painting.

About the co-author

Klaus Schwegler

Klaus is a Sr. Marketing Manager in Aryaka’s Product and Solution Marketing. He has over 20 years of experience in the networking, datacenter and semiconductor industries with positions held in product and solutions marketing, integrated programs marketing, customer service and business development. Previous roles included Equinix, Cisco, Philips, Infineon and Mitsubishi. Klaus holds a B.SC degree from HfWU Nuertingen-Geislingen University and is an avid soccer and skiing fan.