Riverbed touts strong channel play in acquisition of German SD-WAN vendor Ocedo

Riverbed looks to Ocedo to make it a more significant player in the SD-WAN market, where Riverbed has been making a major push over the last year.

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Karl Meulema, SVP, Global Channels, at Riverbed

Riverbed Technology, which is the leader in the overall application performance infrastructure market, moved into the software-defined networking market in a big way last year. Now, with the acquisition of  Karlsruhe, Germany-based SD-WAN firm Ocedo, the company is making a deeper dive into the space, one that the company says will provide its channel partners with new opportunities. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Last spring, Riverbed revamped its SteelFusion branch office solution into a fully converged offering with its 4.0 release, which had what the company considers to be phenomenal growth in 2015, being successful among both large and small customers. In  the fall, they put this into a broader context with the Project Tiger initiative, which will see them bring a new suite of application-centric SD-WAN solutions to market beginning in the first quarter of 2016. The Ocedo acquisition is intended to strengthen Project Tiger, and Riverbed’s overall position in the software-defined space.

“The acquisition of Ocedo is a game changer, as it immediately positions Riverbed among the leaders of software-defined and SD-WAN solutions,” said analyst Zeus Kerravala of ZK Research.

“This acquisition further fuels Riverbed’s Project Tiger initiative,” said Josh Dobies, the company’s Senior Director of Product Marketing. “Ocedo technology complements Riverbed’s organic R&D in software defined networking and SD-WAN. In addition to a line of secure SD-WAN gateways that will complement and expand the full line of SD-WAN gateways that Riverbed will be bringing to market as part of the Project Tiger initiative, Ocedo also adds a line of next-generation branch networking products including LAN switches and Wi-Fi access points.”

The centrally-managed Ocedo Connect can either be consumed as a cloud service, or self-hosted on-prem to manage all the Ocedo network components. Ocedo’s cloud management is engineered for IT service provider partners that deploy and manage multi-site and multi-tenant networks, and the company has touted its managed networks-as-a-service capability as a key differentiator for its channel partners.

Riverbed is emphasizing that the Ocedo acquisition will create significant new growth opportunities for Riverbed and its partners.

“The Ocedo acquisition enhances Riverbed’s ecosystem of technology partners, channel partners, system integrators and service providers,” said Karl Meulema, SVP, Global Channels, at Riverbed. “They can now offer the best portfolio of application performance infrastructure products for software-defined networking and SD-WAN implementations to remote and branch office locations.

Meulema indicated that integration of Ocedo’s capabilities into the offerings of Riverbed partners is scheduled to occur quickly.

“We expect to implement training and partner enablement programs for the new SD-WAN products and services this quarter,” he said.

All three of Ocedo’s co-founders, CEO Jan Hichert, CTO Gert Hansen and CFO Markus Hennig, were previously also the co-founders of  network security company Astaro, which grew from a three-person startup in 2000 to a global company that was acquired by Sophos in 2011.