Fortinet hooks SD-WAN deal with colocation giant Equinix

Fortinet teams up with Equinix to put its Secure SD-WAN offering on Equinix's Network Edge. (Pixabay)

SD-WAN and firewall vendor Fortinet has landed an SD-WAN deal with colocation giant Equinix. In order to better serve enterprise customers, Fortinet has paired its Fortinet Secure SD-WAN with Equinix's Network Edge marketplace.

Equinix is now a cloud on-ramp for Fortinet's Secure SD-WAN offering, which means enterprise customers can now access their data and workloads, such as Office 365 or Salesforce, across multiple public clouds.

"This is a smart move," said Scott Raynovich, founder and chief analyst of Futuriom. "It's clear that colocation and cloud POPs are going to become an increasingly important part of the SD-WAN story as it morphs into multi-cloud networking. It's a win for both companies."

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RELATED: Industry Voices—Chua: In 2020, will SD-WAN turn SASE and FUN?

According to AvidThink founder and principal Roy Chua, some of the big SD-WAN trends for this year include tighter SD-WAN integration into SaaS applications and IaaS platforms and multi-cloud capabilities.

Fortinet Secure SD-WAN is now available as a virtual network service on Equinix's Network Edge platform. Having its SD-WAN service located on the network edge enables enterprises to reduce latency while accessing multiple cloud applications securely.

Adding a colocation option extended the reach of Fortinet Secure SD-WAN offering, which is also available via a hardware appliance, as a VNF for on-premises deployments and as a virtual application across major cloud providers such as Google Cloud.

In addition to Equinix, Fortinet has announced customer wins with GTT,  Windstream Enterprises, Masergy, and Telenor Sweden, among others. Fortinet has said it has 21,000 customers for its Secure SD-WAN platform.

RELATED: Fortinet's 21,000 SD-WAN customers top Cisco's numbers by 1,000

Equinix launched its Network Edge services in June. Network Edge enables enterprises to deploy their network services on Equinix's global interconnection platform, without a physical data center deployment or hardware requirements. It's also compatible with existing physical deployments on Platform Equinix.

“Equinix’s Network Edge services accelerate digital transformation for global businesses by enabling companies to modernize networks virtually," said Equinix's Bill Long, senior vice president, core product management, in a statement. "By offering Fortinet Secure SD-WAN as a virtual network service on Network Edge, customers can potentially reduce capital expenses while seamlessly deploying simplified WAN Edge operations closer to end users, clouds and valuable ecosystems in more global locations.”

While Fortinet initially made its mark as a security vendor that worked with pure-play SD-WAN companies, several years ago it started offering its own flavor of SD-WAN backed by its security portfolio. That decision has made Fortinet both a friend of the SD-WAN companies that it partners with, and an enemy as it works to win its own SD-WAN business.

"Fortinet is making progress in the SD-WAN space," Frost & Sullivan's Roopa Honnachari, industry director, information and communications technologies. "If a CISO or any security related decision maker is doing the evaluation, they are preferring Fortinet SD-WAN for its inherent integrated security functionality.  

"However, in my research, I do not compare Fortinet with other SD-WAN vendors as Fortinet SD-WAN functionality is offered default in FortiGate, at no extra charge.  So it's really hard to count their sites or revenues as FortiGate is what they are selling."

Fortinet's Q4 earnings robust

Fortinet reported its fourth quarter earnings on Thursday for the quarter that ended Dec. 31. In Q4, Fortinet's revenue increased 22% to $614 million, which easily beat its revenue of $507 million in the same quarter a year ago. Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Fortinet's earnings per share was 76 cents, which topped 59 cents per share a year ago. Analysts had projected Fortinet earnings of 70 cents per share on sales of $602 million for the fourth quarter.

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