The In Conversation series is an opportunity for us to talk to the people who make up the Victory Square Technologies subsidiary family, giving you a look at who they are and what they do.
Our latest sit-down is with Geoff Hultin, President of Multapplied Networks Inc. Fresh off of being listed as a Vendor of Note in Gartner Inc.’s Magic Quadrant for WAN Edge InfrastructureReport, VST’s James Graham caught up with Geoff to learn more about how Multapplied helps provide the infrastructure that keeps today’s internet running.
James: What is SD-WAN and how does it make life better for Service Providers and Internet users?
Geoff: Software-Defined Wide-Area Network (SD-WAN) is an upgrade on traditional Wide-Area Networks (WAN). The SD (software defined) is a specific application of cutting edge software-defined networking (SDN) technology applied to WAN connections. It is designed to fully support applications hosted in on-premise data centers, cloud applications, and SaaS solutions.
The Multapplied SD-WAN platform solves many problems. Our platform solves access issues where service is poor. It solves redundancy issues. It solves certain security issues and it provides management, monitoring and a host of other network operation functions.
Our platform helps Service Providers that sell Internet access, Cloud services, hosted telephone systems, video conferencing and other applications. Multapplied SD-WAN enables them to compete with the largest telecoms by providing the quality of service, experience, and up-time that formerly was available only from expensive, fiber-based telecom networks. We give every ISP, Managed Service Provider, and Competitive telecom the ability to deliver secure, reliable networks over the Internet and compete effectively with the big telecoms.
ISP, MSP and Competitive telecoms who use our software can use any Internet connections available in any city, state or country and combine them into a national or international network. And they aren’t paying the telecom for a specialized service that’s “business grade”, takes 12–16 weeks for delivery, and requires highly specialized engineers. Our software makes it “click-a-button” simple to set up networks using whatever Internet you can get.
This means ISPs and MSPs who bundle our software with their services have a way to make sure that their clients have multiple, always-on internet connections. In addition, they can use all the bandwidth they buy and get a better overall experience.
James: When was the moment that the team realized there was a pain point that Multapplied’s services could help with?
Geoff: Back in 2007, Multapplied Founder and CEO Johan Arnet started an ISP called Rocket Networks. He developed software for a client in the Rocky Mountains who had over 30 branch offices and was having trouble getting reliable, high speed and affordable networks and the Internet to connect all the branches.
That was when Multapplied started — it was a simple idea of using off-the-shelf Internet to create private networks. It’s not a simple thing to take two different connections from different providers and make them work as one. But we did it — and can now aggregate and provide seamless, fast failover between ADSL, Cable, Fiber, and 4G.
James: What are the Benefits of Multapplied’s white label platform?
Geoff: Companies like Cisco and VMware have phenomenal brands and don’t need you building them up. Sell your own SD-WAN service, and promote your own brand instead. White labeling your SD-WAN through Multapplied will put you in control of your offering. It will be YOUR SD-WAN product, with YOUR branding that you license, manage and control end-to-end. You have full monitoring and management capabilities over your network, ensuring the quality of your managed service delivery is maximized.
With our white label platform comes flexible subscription pricing that allows you to set your own prices — charge per port or by the amount of bandwidth used, it’s completely up to you. The best part is that your costs don’t grow unless your revenues do, ensuring our solution is always affordable for our partners.
James: What differentiates Multapplied from the competition?
Geoff: Probably our view that the network and customer come first. Fancy UI and bells and whistles, while nice, aren’t really core to any SD-WAN solution.
Having owned an Internet Service Provider, we understand the business and operational challenges of being a profitable Service Provider. This is why we’re focused on enabling Service Providers to compete effectively.
Multapplied’s business model is very friendly to Service Providers. We provide a Subscription model that scales costs with revenue. When revenue goes up because you’re selling more of your services and delivering them using our software, your license costs increase proportionately. Same when revenue dips a bit; your Multapplied costs go down.
Second, our software is very effective and reliable. We’ve been working on it since 2009 and provide a high degree of site survivability — the ability for you to have multiple connections and failover seamlessly between them without dropping phone calls or any other business-critical application that’s being used.
We’re also a fully white-label SD-WAN platform so our Partners are building their brands, not somebody else’s. Our Partners aren’t just retail distributors for somebody else’s software and value proposition. They are growing their own brand, using their own people, networks and building their own relationships with end-customers — making that relationship more solid and valuable.
We also provide a true multi-tenant environment. This has two unique attributes: First, it allows our Partners to put multiple end-customers securely on the same hardware and software instance and scale that up as the number of customers grows. This provides efficient use of IT resources. Second, it allows our Partners to sell their infrastructure to local, smaller ISP or MSP, enabling those smaller providers while benefiting from additional sales reach and penetration. It allows our Partners to build “levels” of sub-Partner and leverage their investment to gain more revenue.
James: How Important is it to Multapplied to have been mentioned as a Vendor of Note in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant report?
Geoff: We were extremely honored to get this kind of recognition. Vendor of Note status really endorses Multapplied’s SD-WAN platform and business model. More importantly, It’s a testament to the hard work and dedication that Multapplied staff and our Partners’ sales, marketing and technical teams have shown over the last years. But that being said, we have higher ambitions set going forward — our next goal is to be mentioned directly in the Gartner Magic Quadrant.
James: Where do you see Multapplied 5 years from now?
Geoff: We have high aspirations for the future, although it’s difficult to predict where we’re going to be, we know what we have to do in order to get to where we want to be. The SD-WAN market is growing and we’re going to put ourselves in a position to grow with it.
We’re working on new software that will increase performance and flexibility of our platform, giving it the ability to be deployed across a broader range of platforms, we’re looking into adding true WAN Optimization and a couple of other features we’re not talking about publicly yet.
We plan to remain relevant over the next 5 years by continuing to evolve our platform. We’re focusing on increased scalability of our multi-tenant environment, higher speeds, more flexibility in terms of network designs and integrating traditional networks into Software-defined Internet networks, packet filtering to control more applications in a more granular fashion and a wider variety of devices and market segments.
You can learn more about Multapplied Neworks at www.multapplied.net Geoff Hultin is the President of Multapplied Networks Inc and an industry veteran of over two decades.James Graham wants you to know about all the cool things happening at Victory Square Technologies. He has a great radio voice and even better hair.