MarketsandMarkets expects the global Software-Defined Anything (SDx) market size to grow from USD 51.7 billion to USD 160.8 billion at a CAGR of 25.5% during the forecast period. The SDx market refers to an architectural framework wherein all components of enterprise’s and service provider’s network and data center, such as compute, network, and storage, are virtualized to orchestrate network management, improve network agility, and lower operational cost. In a nutshell, the control plane (software) is abstracted from the data plane (hardware) that enables network administrators to manage the entire enterprise as well as data center infrastructure from a single software console.
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Key and emerging market players include Cisco (US), Dell EMC (US), HPE (US), IBM (US),VMware (US), Huawei (China), Juniper Networks (US), Microsoft (US), Nokia (Finland), Oracle (US), Aryaka Networks (US), Big Switch Networks (US), Citrix (US), Extreme Networks (US), Infovista (France), NEC (Japan), Nutanix (US), Pluribus Networks (US), Red Hat (US), Silver Peak Systems (US), SUSE (Germany), Adaptiv Networks (US), Arista Networks (US), Bigleaf Networks (US), CloudGenix (US), Cumulus Networks (US), DataCore Software (US), DataDirect Networks (US), FatPipe Networks (US), flexiWAN (Israel), Fortinet (US), Fujitsu (Japan), HiveIO (US), Lavelle Networks (India), Lenovo (Hong Kong), Martello Technologies (Canada), Maxta (US), Mushroom Networks (US), NetApp (US), Peplink (US), Pica8 (US), Pivot3 (US), Riverbed (US), Scale Computing (US), StarWind Software (US), StorMagic (UK), Stratoscale (Israel), Veeam Software (Switzerland), Versa Networks (US), and Zenlayer (US).
Cisco (US) has its presence in over 100 countries, catering to a wide customer base in the regions of the Americas; Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA); and the Asia Pacific, Japan, and China (APJC). In 2018, the company’s total R&D spending accounted for USD 6.33 billion. This spending on R&D has inevitably helped Cisco remain a distinguished player in the SDx market. The company focuses on adopting inorganic growth strategies. For instance, it acquired Viptela, a network virtualization company, for USD 610 million. This acquisition helped Cisco integrate Cisco’s Integrated Services Routers/ Aggregation Services Routers (ISR/ASR) with Viptela’s Software-Defined Wide Area Network (SD-WAN) technologies to create Cisco’s new SD-WAN, the combination of a robust product. It was a simple network model, which customers can operationalize easily. Cisco also acquired Springpath, one of the leaders in hyper-convergence software, in September 2017. This acquisition enabled Cisco to continue to deliver next-generation data center innovation to its customers.
HPE (US) is one of the biggest players focusing on the emerging concept of Software-Defined Networking (SDN), SD-WAN, , and Software-Defined Data Center (SDDC). The company has made over 50,000 SDS deployments across the globe and is working toward expanding its reach to be one of the leaders in the SDX market. The company focuses more on product launches and developments, which would enable it to expand its product portfolio of SDx. For instance, in 2019, the company made a substantial contribution to its R&D activities by investing approximately USD 1.7 billion. Furthermore, HPE is focused on inorganic growth strategies to compete and maintain a leading position in the SDx market. For instance, in May 2018, HPE acquired Plexxi, to deliver hyper-converged and composable solutions with a next-generation data network fabric to its customers.
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