Wheelings & Dealings: Juniper Lauded for Its SDN Play Strong Cash Position & WANDL Acquisition

By Paula Bernier December 27, 2013

Juniper Networks made a wide variety of investments this year, and its most recent acquisition ­– of WANDL for $60 million – is already paying returns. According to reports, Juniper’s stock is on the rise (trading at $21.91 at last look) following the deal, which positions the company to offer more affordable and flexible networking solutions.

WANDL stands for Wide Area Network Design Laboratory. It is a 27-year-old private company that sells software used to design, plan and run networks, including IP, MPLS and optical networks. Some 200 service providers, carriers, government organizations and enterprises around the world use WANDL solutions.

A Zacks Equity Research piece on Yahoo! News, notes that this deal, Juniper’s strong cash position ($2.85 billion cash on hand at the end of the third quarter 2013) and the company’s traction in software-defined networking position it well for the future.

This is just the latest of Juniper’s recent investments. In October it led a new funding round for Gainspeed, which offers solutions to centralize control in the data center and distribute processing to the edge of the network. It has also made a host of other investments in recent months. Additionally, a year ago this month Juniper announced the acquisition of Contrail Systems.

In September, Juniper announced the commercial availability of its software-defined networking solution, Juniper Networks Contrail, which has been in trials with more than 40 customers. This commercial release wasn’t expected until 2014, according to reports. The company is making the source code library for Juniper Networks Contrail available through an open source license via OpenContrail, a new initiative, also announced in September.

"As organizations move beyond virtualization of production workloads, attention is shifting toward the management and automation of the software-defined data center," said Peter ffoulkes, TheInfoPro's research director for servers and virtualization. "Over the next two years, the foundations for enterprise cloud computing will be deployed with cloud platforms standing out as the hottest technology and the most critical strategic decision to be made."

TheInfoPro, a service of 451 Research, in December released new research indicating that spending on infrastructure will slow down over the next two years as attention shifts to software-defined data centers. It explained that cloud platforms stand out as the hottest technology for adoption in the next two years, followed by the management and automation functions required for production and virtualized data centers.  

Edited by Cassandra Tucker

Executive Editor, TMC

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