February 27, 2020 | Layne Levine

SD-WAN demand makes Windstream Enterprise the top provider

Summary: A seismic shift in networking is happening right now. Where it’s happening—and who is driving it—is sending shockwaves through the industry.

Although surprising to many, the monumental growth and seismic shift in appetite for SD-WAN in small and medium-sized business applications is something I’ve been predicting for some time. Back in November, when I had the opportunity to be a guest on the Light Reading podcast, I talked about the subject at length.

New year, new opportunities

One of the biggest eye-openers about this shift to software-defined technology is that small to mid-sized businesses are leading the charge to adoption, unlike previous innovations which were traditionally driven by large enterprises. We’re seeing this technology transformation being driven by the needs of those smaller businesses and being picked up by larger enterprises as news of its success spreads.

Increased adoption leads to record earnings

On an earnings call just last week, our CEO Tony Thomas reported that Windstream Enterprise is now the top SD-WAN service provider in the U.S., with over 3,000 SD-WAN customers representing over 27,000 endpoint locations, and cited a 38% annual growth in enterprise strategic revenues. Strategic products and services which include SD-WAN, UCaaS and OfficeSuite UC ® now bring in about $300 million in revenue annually. Three-and-a-half years ago, less than 1% of our revenue was from our strategic products. That’s a shift to get excited about!

SD-WAN transformations take networks “from fragile to agile”

As the provider that helps enterprises make the transition to today’s cloud-based services, Windstream Enterprise is proud to offer a solution that can drive our customers’ network evolution sensibly and cost-effectively. Far from a costly “rip-out and replace,” SD-WAN from WE operates over legacy systems. Combined with WE Connect, our customizable “single pane of glass” portal, our customers get real-time visibility and centralized control over their entire networks. And when paired with diverse connect, SD-WAN delivers a 100% uptime SLA.

The proof is in the numbers… and the case studies

In a previous post, I heralded the success of family-owned Arc3 Gases as an example of what SD-WAN can do for mid-sized businesses. During my chat on the Light Reading podcast, I also referenced the Liberty Steel case study. A century-old Midwest-based steel manufacturer with 1500 employees and eight locations, they were struggling with network circuit failures that stopped production (and abruptly halted sales deals) several times a year. With the adoption of our SD-WAN Concierge, Broadband Access and UCaaS Voice, they reduced their network outages to zero, increased their bandwidth and improved app performance. Hearing about those wins—almost more than hearing about the encouraging earnings numbers—is what keeps us focused on being evangelists for SD-WAN solutions across industries.

Key takeaway: WE is uniquely positioned to help small and medium sized enterprises across all industries realize their vision of technology transformation.
President of Enterprise

Layne Levine

Layne is responsible for sales, financial performance, marketing for the company’s enterprise, mid-market, and commercial markets. He also oversees the company’s Channel Program.