5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

The Week Ending Dec. 8

Topping this week's roundup of companies that came to win is Aerohive.

Also making the list are Skybox, Zyxel, IBM and Nvidia.

Not everyone in the IT industry was making smart moves this week, of course. For a rundown of companies that were unfortunate, unsuccessful or just didn't make good decisions, check out this week's 5 Companies That Had A Rough Week roundup.

Aerohive Jumps Into SD-WAN Market With Offering Designed To Out-Simplify Cisco

Aerohive Networks stepped up its competitive game this week, debuting software-defined WAN technology that the company said offers simplicity, performance and optimization that competitors in the red-hot SD-WAN market can't match.

Aerohive, already a player in the SD-LAN arena, said its new SD-WAN offering will compete head-to-head with products from networking giant Cisco.

The vendor said that with the new product, it's in a better position than Cisco to offer a more unified, more easily managed software-defined networking solution. Cisco's competing lineup includes technologies from its Viptela and Meraki acquisitions. Aerohive's SD-WAN offerings include the XR200P cloud-managed, secure SD-WAN router; a VMware-based virtual VPN gateway appliance; and its Hive Manager cloud management platform.

Skybox Security Names First-Ever Channel Chief, Goes All-In On MSSP And Systems Integrator Partnerships

Skybox Security this week tapped a longtime executive and former systems integrator CEO to be the company's first-ever global channel chief in preparation for the rollout of a new managed security service provider and systems integrator channel program.

The cybersecurity management and analytics company named Uri Levy as its first vice president of worldwide channels, charged with growing the company's network of global resellers. Levy is an eight-year Skybox veteran who previously worked at CA and NetCom Systems.

Among the initiatives on his 2018 to-do list is launching a program for managed security service providers and systems integrator partners: Levy told CRN that he hopes to double the company's base of MSSPs in the next year. He also plans to improve partner sales enablement, channel marketing, and training and certification programs for resellers.

Skybox expects the channel to be a key driver of its future revenue growth and Levy's appointment is a critical step to help make that happen.

Zyxel Prepares For Channel Program Changes, Aggressive Partner Recruitment Effort

Speaking of channel initiatives for 2018, networking equipment maker Zyxel is preparing an aggressive push to recruit channel partners in the new year, as well as make fundamental changes to its channel program to help partners expand into the cloud arena.

David Soares, who was named Zyxel's new vice president of sales for North America this week, told CRN that he plans to boost partners' earnings potential, steer the channel toward a more cloud-focused managed service provider model, and lure partners away from competitors such as Cisco Meraki, Ruckus Wireless and Ubiquiti.

While Zyxel overhauled its channel program two years ago, Soares said it's time for a program tune-up to counter moves by the competition. A key part of that will be setting new discount levels for partners – including offering higher discounts to encourage partners to work with the vendor's Nebula cloud networking offering.

IBM Unveils Power9 Microprocessor Along With New Servers Geared For AI

On the product front, IBM unveiled its latest microprocessor Tuesday as the company ramps up its efforts around AI. The Power9 processor was launched in conjunction with a new server line to better integrate the new CPU with other embedded devices and power advanced workloads like artificial intelligence.

The new AC922 Servers with the processors deliver unprecedented performance for intensive computing tasks – like training machine-learning models and advanced analytics, according to IBM.

IBM said that AC922s will start shipping later in December, with the first lineup going to the Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, where thousands will be grouped together to build the world's fastest supercomputer.

Nvidia Lifts Veil On 'Most Powerful PC GPU Ever Created Nvidia Friday unveiled the Titan V GPU, which the company said is the ’most powerful PC GPU ever created’ and is targeted at cientists working on AI and deep learning. With starting prices at $2,999, Nvidia’s Titan V isn't inexpensive – but the consumer-grade graphics card offers up to nine times the deep-learning performance of its predecessor, the Titan Xp, according to Nvidia. The Titan V, which is available now, packs 21.1 billion transistors and touts up to 110 teraflops of performance. The GPU runs on Nvidia’s new Volta architecture, which is designed to work on both computations and calculations so that it can be targeted at high-intensive computing tasks like artificial intelligence and simulation processing.