Cato Networks announced on Monday the launch of a new global partner program that it said speeds up channel partners' on-boarding of its services and their return on investment (ROI).
The Cato Partners Program serves up the vendor's cloud-based, SD-WAN platform to its partners including master agents, agents, service providers, VARs (value-added resellers) and distributors. Cato said it designed its partner program from the ground up to improve onboarding, margin opportunities and expanded revenue streams.
“Since its inception Cato has focused on making networking simpler. But simplicity isn’t just about our service; it’s also about how we partner,” said Shlomo Kramer, CEO and co-founder of Cato Networks, in a statement. “We enable partners to profit from digital transformation no matter the opportunity whether its SD-WAN as an MPLS replacement, secure branch Internet access, optimized global connectivity, facilitating cloud adoption, or mobile access."
In addition to maximizing profitability, Cato said it built the platform to help its partners shorten their sales cycles.
The program is comprised of two partner tiers, and Cato doesn't require a capital investment for either tier. Training and certification are free, and available online and on-demand. For qualified partners, Cato offers free demo licenses, free equipment, and marketing development funds (MDF) to support partners’ lead-generation efforts.
Cato claimed its partner program was the first to leverage the secure access service edge (SASE) platform that was recently defined by Gartner. SASE, which is pronounced "Sassy," converges the functions of network and security point solutions into a unified, global cloud-native service, according to Gartner, but some in the industry feel it's an unnecessary acronym that basically includes SD-WAN with enhanced security.
By putting a business model behind its services, Cato is working to distinguish itself in a crowded field of more than 60 SD-WAN vendors. According to a report by to IHS Markit, second quarter revenues were up 23% sequentially. IHS Markit predicts that SD-WAN revenue will rise to $4.4 billion by 2023.
In an order to better compete against telcos' managed SD-WAN services, Cato Networks its Hands-Free Management offering in July.
Cato, along with Aryaka and Mode.net, differentiates itself from telcos' SD-WAN offerings by using its own private core network instead of routing SD-WAN traffic over the public internet. By using its own private network, Cato can provide end-to-end quality of service for its customers. Among the 60-plus SD-WAN vendors, Cato Networks is unique because its security functions are in the cloud and its self-healing POPs don't require hardware.
Last week, Cato Networks was named as one of FierceTelecom's top disrupters for 2019.