Nokia’s Nuage Networks today announced its ninth service provider win for its software defined wide area networking (SD-WAN). Canada’s Telus is now providing a new network as a service (NaaS) offering based on Nuage’s SD-WAN.
Hussein Khazaal, Nuage’s VP of marketing and products, said the Telus NaaS is production-ready. “Telus has selected the technology and integrated it into their backend; educated their sales force; and you can go as a customer to their portal,” said Khazaal. “You can see the price point at which they’re offering it and the list of features.”
Checking out the price points, it looks like Telus is offering its NaaS to single-site customers starting at $125 per month, while prices for multisite customers start at $175 per month.
“This whole go-to-market is what we’re trying to help service providers do with our solution,” said Khazaal.
Telus was able to roll out the Nuage SD-WAN rather quickly because it had been an Alcatel Lucent customer, which Nokia gained when it purchased Alcatel Lucent. The Telus project is similar to Nuage’s work with Telefonica, said Khazaal. “They [Telus] also have a data center piece as well as SD-WAN,” he said.
Nokia and the former Alcatel Lucent both had long-standing relationships with many service providers. The combined company is using its Nuage SD-WAN product to effectively turn its service providers customers into a channel to reach new business customers. “We’re trying to use this to make a push into the enterprise as Nokia…to use the service providers that have those customers to raise brand awareness and build better relationships with those enterprises,” said Khazaal.
Nuage’s marketing team worked with Telus to develop the promotional videos for its NaaS. “We helped them to make sure the brand is there — ‘NaaS powered by Nuage SD-WAN,’” said Khazaal. “It’s important for us to raise brand awareness in that segment. We don’t want to sell direct to their customers, but take the opportunity for them to know more about Nuage.”
The whole business of competing for SD-WAN business is a bit tricky. The founder of the SD-WAN startup TELoIP Pat Saavedra, explained it a while back to SDxCentral. He said many SD-WAN vendors are approaching the customers of managed service providers, directly. Conversely, TELoIP partners with MSPs. The two work together, agreeing not to compete. And TELoIP can tap into the MSP’s existing relationships with enterprises.
Shin Umeda, VP of Dell’Oro Group, recently told SDxCentral that in 2016, 80 percent of SD-WAN vendors sold their technology directly to enterprises and 20 percent sold to service providers for either a managed service or as an over-the-top play. However, by 2021, the number of SD-WAN vendors selling to service providers is expected to increase to 30 percent.
Telus was able to launch SD-WAN quickly, but apparently that has not been the case for some of the other Nuage SD-WAN customers. BT, for instance, is still in the process of integrating the Nuage SD-WAN into its networks. BT is much bigger than Telus, providing services globally.
“BT’s SD-WAN rollout will be global, in the sense that all 10,000 BT nodes will be eligible to use the service,” Nuage CEO Sunil Khandekar told SDxCentral in October 2016. On a customer-by-customer basis, Nuage will “drop-ship” the necessary software, Khandekar said at the time.
BT calls its SD-WAN service Agile Connect. “We have been working with their sales teams in different regions for go-to-market collateral,” said Khazaal. “They may have pilot customers. There’s customization, inventory for CPE boxes. We’re expecting BT to be maybe in the same phase [as Telus] later this year.”