Matt Carter is a former Sprint executive who most recently served as president and CEO at Inteliquent, a public, cloud-based unified communications company. He joined Aryaka as CEO in September with plans to oversee the company’s next phase of growth. Carter replaces John Peters, the former Aryaka CEO, who was only with the firm about five months. According to Peters’ LinkedIn profile, he provides interim CEO services to help stabilize companies.
In an interview with SDxCentral, Carter said that he is focused on taking Aryaka to the next phase of growth, whether that is as an independent company, a public company, or an acquisition. “My focus is to build a great business,” he said. “I am here to make sure we are operating from a position of strength.”
Aryaka does SD-WAN a little differently from some players in the space. The company has invested in a global private network, which it put together by buying Layer 2 capacity from Tier 1 and Tier 2 service providers. Earlier this year the company announced that it had partnered with China Mobile to deliver SD-WAN to global companies with offices in China and Chinese companies with offices outside the country. A big draw for China Mobile was Aryaka’s private network.
Carter, who was president of Sprint’s global enterprise business, is well aware of the challenges ahead for Aryaka. When he was with Sprint, he said the company was focused on selling MPLS lines and was threatened by newcomers like Aryaka that were starting to infiltrate the market offering cloud-based networking services that were much less expensive than MPLS. “Sprint was the type of company that Aryaka was trying to take out,” Carter said.
But he also acknowledges that there are a lot of SD-WAN vendors in the marketplace, which is a problem because he thinks they are “muddying the opportunity.” Carter’s goal is to make it very clear to enterprises and telcos what value Aryaka provides and what problem it solves. “I think the real opportunity is in focusing on what problem we are solving for our customers.”
And Carter added that the problems customers are trying to solve may vary. Some might have a remote access problem. Others might need network access in China or Singapore. “Everyone has a different problem. We need to make sure we customize our messaging for the right audience.”
Carter expects there to be more consolidation in the SD-WAN area, and he predicts that those SD-WAN vendors that stand apart from the rest will be those that acquire a roster of big corporations that are using their gear. “We want to be in a position to be an acquirer of other companies, or we will be in a position that others may want to take a look at and acquire us,” he said.