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Cradlepoint Buys Pertino in SD-WAN Deal

The acquisition of the network virtualization startup will enable Cradlepoint to bring SDN capabilities to WANs for enterprises and SMBs.

network virtualization

Cradlepoint, a 4G LTE provider based in Boise, Idaho, has bought network virtualization startup Pertino to expand its ability in the growing software-defined WAN space.

Cradlepoint officials announced the deal Dec. 8, saying that the company will use Pertino's technology and expertise to bring software-defined networking (SDN) to wide-area networks (WANs) that use 4G LTE, broadband or Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS). The move will benefit small and midsize businesses (SMBs) as well as enterprises, according to company officials.

No financial details were released.

"Enterprises around the world are moving to the flexible, more fluid networking options created by 4G as CIOs look to complement, augment and extend their existing WAN infrastructure, a move that supports their needs today to rapidly turn up new services and capabilities in a less complex and more cost-effective way," Cradlepoint Chairman and CEO George Mulhern said in a statement. "As enterprises begin to connect 'things (IoT)' as well as people and places, they are telling us that they need a more scalable, secure and agile network."

The trend toward SD-WAN is being driven by the rise of mobile computing, the cloud and the Internet of things. Pertino co-founder and CEO Craig Elliot said in a statement that by 2020, mobile workers will account for more than 72 percent of the U.S. workforce, and that the number of tablets and smartphones will exceed that of PCs and servers. Add in the billions of connected devices, and "these seismic trends are creating the need for more scalable, secure, agile and reliable WANs with pervasive wireless connectivity," Elliott said.

Businesses and service providers are looking for faster, more flexible and more affordable alternatives—or complements—to MPLS, which is how most organizations currently link their data centers with their remote offices, but which is not best suited in a cloud-based world where speed is at a premium. Pertino's technology will enable Cradlepoint to help create private wireless networks over the Internet with virtualized services than run in the cloud and on customer on-premises equipment, officials said.

Pertino launched in 2012, and over the past few years has added to its SDN platform. Most recently, Pertino made its Cloud Network Engine offering easier to deploy in data centers, WANs and IoT implementations, and increased its security capabilities.