ngena: Simplifying the Network Connectivity With CISCO SD-WAN as a Service

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Bart de Graaff, CEO Innovation is the name of the game for the 21st-century business world. By readily adopting digital transformation and cloud-native services and applications, organizations are continually expanding their footprint across countries and continents. The success of these expansions depends on an around the clock availability of data as the business processes are turning data-centric. As a result, organizations need a network that is faster and smarter, enabling them to deploy and change it as per their business requirements.

However, the traditional wide area networks (WANs) are not flexible and scalable enough to cope with present-day dynamic networking requirements. Besides, maintaining these networks can burn a hole in the organizations’ pockets. To that end, SD-WAN has emerged as a silver bullet solution that offers improved performance and higher bandwidth by leveraging multiple network paths and faster broadband connections, allowing organizations to send data over large geographic distances, direct traffic, and improve connectivity. It is easily deployable and readily scalable according to the requirement of organizations. SD-WAN uses programmability and automation to reduce manual intervention that leads to enhanced network agility. On top of that, the virtual WAN architecture provides better security at a much lower cost by replacing expensive MPLS networks with cost-effective and efficient network circuits. However, adopting a new networking approach can be an arduous task for organizations. They need to build the network from the ground up, keeping the technology, configuration, logistics, and many other aspects in mind. They also have to rope in an appropriate telco provider for unhindered connectivity. Essentially, all the logic used in the traditional hardware-based network needs to be in the SD-WAN. Nonetheless, organizations also need to be wary about the cost efficiency and speed to market of the entire deployment and management procedures of their SD-WAN network.

A Germany-based company, ngena—the Next Generation Enterprise Network Alliance helps organizations overcome the challenges of SD-WAN deployment and management with its connectivity platform as a service. The company has built a global connectivity platform that provides comprehensive, integrated, fully automated, highly flexible, and intuitive connectivity services for any location in the world. Its connectivity services support user-centric architectures and the flexible integration of SaaS and other cloud-based services, enabling a seamless cloud journey for organizations. Also, ngena offers its services at a much lower cost, enabling organizations to realizer a faster return on investment (ROI). “With our connectivity platform as a service, there is only operating expenditure (OPEX), no capital expenditure (CAPEX),” states Bart de Graaff, CEO at ngena.


We have designed an extremely flexible, agile, cost-effective, and easy to deploy SD-WAN network that facilitates seamless cloud journey for organizations

Built on Cisco technologies, ngena’s platform features state-of-the-art cloud, security, management, layered orchestration for seamless automation, service assurance, and virtualization technologies to offer organizations the benefits of high quality, enterprise-grade VPN services. “Everything we do and deploy is based around Cisco, we just make it in such a way that it becomes easy to use, and globally available,” states Bart. The company leverages Cisco’s Viptela and Meraki to offer SD WAN services that include end-to-end automation of all the network deployment and change processes. It allows organizations a quicker integration of new branch establishments into their corporate network. More importantly, with ngena’s SD WAN services, any modifications to the network can be accomplished in minutes rather than days. Further, the company’s SD-WAN VPN is built irrespective of the underlying access types such as Internet Public Lines, Ethernet, MPLS, Mobile Broadband, and others.

ngena is built on a partnership approach where it interconnects all the regional networks of more than 30 alliance partners via ngena’s global private backbone and regional data center hubs, forming a single global software-defined network. “You order the network with one of our alliance partners, and we run it for you on a global scale and with high-quality local customer care,” says Bart. With ngena’s shared network, local alliance partners can deliver consistent hybrid VPN services to the end customers. In Addition, the company’s platform-as-a-service approach allows its partner to sell and deploy SD-WAN network at a much higher speed and lesser cost than any other SD-WAN solution provider.

The key takeaway with ngena’s solution is the speed and ease with which its partners can build the entire SD-WAN network for the end customers. Bart says, “We wanted to create an Amazon-like shopping environment to help our client roll out networking services to their end-customers.” The company offers a standard access design that acts as a building block for the entire network. Besides, ngena’s central portal has a quicksizer feature that gives alliance partners the ability to design and configure their end customers’ networks from ngena’s product catalog according to their requirements. Once the network is configured, the portal also offers automated and end-to-end processes for financial, logistics, and support aspects to create a binding offer. “We configure all the controllers, policies, security guidelines, and everything that our partners need to build a network and generate that automatically, based on their interaction with our central portal. So, it’s one interface, and then everything behind it is zero-touch,” states Bart.
The company is a front runner in implementing the secure access service edge (SASE) that identifies users and devices, applies policy-based security, and delivers secure access to users, applications, and devices irrespective of their location. “We implemented SASE approach on our platform before the term was even coined,” states Bart. ngena also adopts strict security and governance measures, including vulnerability scans, DDoS mitigation, and regular penetration testing to mitigate any challenges to data protection and network security. Further, the company provides end-to-end encryption for its services and allows additional security upgrades such as firewalls, intrusion prevention, detection systems, and others.

“With our Cisco SD-WAN as a service, there is only OPEX, no CAPEX”

Moreover, while some providers just offer hardware or an SD-WAN overlay to organizations’ existing legacy networks, ngena’s solution provides end-to-end SD-WAN managed services, rendering complete support to handle its alliance partners and clients’ corporate network. The company’s platform also has a Network Health Dashboard, enabling users to monitor their network’s performance. Along with it, ngena provides a range of network traffic optimization services and quality of service parameters that significantly improve the performance of organizations’ networks and the user experience.

Delivering Client Success, Expanding Services, and Innovating Connectivity

ngena boasts of a long list of satisfied clientele that has leveraged its solutions to full effect. Bart says, “What clients see as the end result of using our technology is that we are faster and more gradual.” He shares a customer success story of Imperial Brands plc, a dynamic and fast-moving consumer goods company with 45 sites in 29 countries across different continents. Their network was highly distributed, and they were looking for a new network to connect their global sites and branch offices. With the proliferation of cloud applications, the client was looking for a higher bandwidth and state-of-the-art technology solution. ngena helped them migrate to their desired network, one location at a time, in a standardized fashion and attractive price-performance ratio. This allowed the decision-makers within Imperial Brands to adjust to the different implementation requirements. “We provided the client with an extremely flexible network that allows them to add new sites faster in a cost-efficient manner,” says Bart.

Established in 2016, the company has quickly climbed the ladder of success. With multiple offices in the U.S. and a presence in Hungary, Slovakia, Singapore, and Mexico, ngena’s team comprises more than 240 members. The company is now planning to add another layer on its connectivity platform to support its partners in providing an on-site capability for the IoT and edge devices, storage, and multi-cloud transactions. “Our main focus is to provide Simplified connectivity at speed. Thus, we keep innovating our services to help our clients stay ahead in their digital journey,” concludes Bart.

Company
ngena

Headquarters
Frankfurt, Germany

Management
Bart de Graaff, CEO

Description
A Germany-based company, ngena—the Next Generation Enterprise Network Alliance helps organizations overcome the challenges of SD-WAN deployment and management with its connectivity platform as a service. The company has built a global connectivity platform that provides comprehensive, integrated, fully automated, highly flexible, and intuitive connectivity services for any location in the world. Its connectivity services support user-centric architectures and the flexible integration of SaaS and other cloud-based services, enabling a seamless cloud journey for organizations

Ngena