A step ahead


Hatem Hariri, general manager, Middle East and Africa is responsible for all aspects of sales strategy, planning and operations across Juniper’s entire MEA business. He discusses the vendor’s focus on secured networks and the shifts in the marketplace

Discuss briefly Juniper’s strategy towards SDN and how it is unique?
Networking and security are both domains where we are an established leader. Bringing these two together, we are offering SDSN (software defined secure networks). So while other vendors are still discussing SDN, we are a step ahead.
What is needed today is a network that can service the partner and customer the way they want with scalability, open and interoperable with different vendors. You don’t want to be locked into solutions that aren’t open and interoperable. We confirm to open standards so that we can interoperate with other vendor solutions and can help customers build appropriate cloud environments that can support required applications.
Everyone want to embrace the new digital technologies. You cannot rely on traditional technologies of past years to offer the flexibility required for digital transformation for instance. Which is why we are moving further into the SSDN journey.

Discuss Juniper’s focus on simplifying network management?

The budgets are shrinking. We have been a leading manufacturer of secured routing, switching, datacenter equipment etc. We offer the Junos Space Network Management Platform that works with our management applications to simplify and automate management of Juniper’s switching, routing, and security devices. This sit on top of all these and reduce costs by automation and providing monitoring and enable the right platform for the cloud. Before we used to have standalone network management for security, another for data etc. Today with our platform, you can cover everything form a single window.
The platform helps network operators at enterprises and service providers scale operations, reduce complexity, and enable new applications and services to be brought to market quickly, through multilayered network abstractions, operator-centric automation schemes, and a simple point-and-click UI.

Elaborate on partner focus?
There is a massive evolution happening in the industry. Our partners are key to our strategy. We are a partner centric organization with 95% of our Business coming through partners. We are looking at ways to help partners enhance their skills and to give them more opportunities.
In our region, all of our telco Business requirements is addressed by partners. We do direct engagement with these large key customers but the sales is through partners.
We are also working with telco service provider to become partners for us to their customers. This is a growing trend. The decline of revenues from voice services has inspired telco companies to resell cloud and other technology solution to their customers in the enterprise segment.
Our routes to market include the SI channel, global integrators and the ISP channel. At the end of the day, they are our feet in the market. Today customer are looking for partners that can understand their Businesses and accordingly propose the right solutions. They need to bring some domain expertise and therefore vertical focused partners are quite important for us.
Discuss specialization focus for partners?
At the moment, specializations are around technologies. We have scaled our program to include specialization around the datacenter and the cloud. We don’t offer specializations around verticals but we have marketing campaigns directed around verticals that our partners can take to market.

Is the datacenter Business a strong focus?
The datacentre business is a strong play for us. We have a good customer base in the GCC. We are transforming the solution to a cloud datacenter. We have recently acquired AppFormix, a cloud operations management and optimization startup are integrating the solution to offer a unique solution to the market.

How aware are customer about the advantages of solutions with open standards?
Everyone is transforming and it is the time for consolidation. Customers are more aware that today they cannot afford to be locked into a technology solution, in order to take advantage of newer technologies, they need solutions that adhere to open standards, open platform that are also secure at the same time. This is our differentiator and we are seeing more enterprises approaching us to build their network as well as private and hybrid clouds.