Aryaka has pulled out of Gartner's Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge Infrastructure, which gives SD-WAN vendors that score well bragging rights with potential customers. On a separate note, Aryaka will roll out a new offering called "Private Access" in its current quarter.
After being named a "Visionary” in a previous Magic Quadrant, Aryaka chief marketing officer Shashi Kiran said Aryaka no longer fits Gartner's defination of the sector.
"I think the Magic Quadrant is really about do-it-yourself approaches and box-based approaches and really not conducive to more of a as-a service delivery model. We experienced a disconnect as a result," Kiran said. "I'm actually receiving so many notes from not just people that we work with, but also from some of our competitors.
"I think they've all been surprised by the stance that we've taken and in a public way. So it's good to see that this problem isn't unique to us."
Kiran, who wrote a blog about Aryaka's decision to pull out the research company's Magic Quadrant, said Aryaka would continue participating with Gartner in other areas going forward.
Aryaka has always been a different flavor in the SD-WAN sector due to its private network of more than 30 points of presence (POPs) around the globe. The SD-WAN market has fractured into three main areas: SD-WAN appliance vendors, SD-WAN-as-a-service companies and DYI vendors. As a "cloud first" vendor, Aryaka is firmly in the "as-a-service" WAN sector, which pits it against service providers such as Orange Business Services and AT&T.
"We were kind of being forced to fit into a criteria that was only a partial set of our capabilities instead of painting us as a whole," Kiran said. "In a way, it actually creates an inaccurate picture in respect to the prospect of customers that are looking at the reports to make a buying decision.
"Just by reading it, and with the influence of somebody like Gartner, they (potential customers) walk away with the wrong impression. That means it is unfair for the prospect of making the buying decision since they had a different perception, and we may have been the right fit for them."
Aryaka will add Private Access to its SmartSecure portfolio
Like many vendors, the coronavirus pandemic has led to Aryaka tweaking its existing product offerings while also creating new ones as the workforce has largely moved beyond office walls. On that note, Aryaka has renamed its Secure Remote Access offering to VPN Accelerate, and it plans to offer a new service, Private Access, later this quarter. Both are under Aryaka's SmartSecure umbrella. SmartSecure is a managed as-a-service firewall offering for virtual networking functions (VNFs.)
Kiran said VPN Accelerate is a performance acceleration solution for customers that can go over Aryaka's private backbone to other points of presence and terminate at other VPN concentrators.
"It gives them a lot of flexibility," Kiran said. "The new one (Private Access) that we're announcing is also looking at endpoint clients that will terminate into Aryaka's POPs. That gives enterprises flexibility in terms of how they treat their hybrid workforces, and allows them to subscribe for performance and a bandwidth pool
"It becomes immaterial whether that pool is being accessed by the user or by the site. And then you can consistently apply policies from a cloud-like a centralized management instance, which we will be orchestrating."
On the network roadmap, Kiran said Aryaka plans to add five more POPs this year in order to better enable privacy and compliance regulations across different countries.
"We're also increasing the bandwidth in the POPs and between the POPs and cloud POPs as part of a smart cloud offering," Kiran said. "Overall, the capacity is increasing. We have seen a utilization spike happen in this quarter. There was a bit of a dip in April and May, but now we've seen a spike in the last two months.
"Traffic is coming up globally, and we have this global view (of traffic.) So both in terms of our footprint, as well as capacity, we're increasing our investment."
In May of last year, Aryaka announced it had closed a $50 million round of funding led by Goldman Sachs Private Capital Investing, which brought its total funding to $184 million. While there has been some consolidation in the SD-WAN sector this year, Aryaka executives have previously said the company could go to an IPO.
"We've been really focused on doubling down on our core areas and really being the best network-as-a-service provider with application performance. We're augmenting it with security and really tying that together to cloud," Kiran said. "I think we're on the cusp of being profitable, but we're investing in growth as well. So it's a good data point in terms of growing a company in a manner that is healthy. Overall, the trends are reasonably positive."