Comcast Business ramps enterprise ambitions with Masergy acquisition

Comcast Business inked a deal to acquire cloud and software-defined networking company Masergy for an undisclosed sum, seeking to strengthen its ability to serve large enterprises with a global footprint.

Founded in 2000, Texas-based Masergy offers a portfolio of managed services including SD-WAN, unified communications-as-a-service, call center-as-a-service and security. It currently serves more than 1,400 customers across nearly 100 countries.

Bill Stemper, president of Comcast Business, said in a statement Masergy’s products provide “a perfect complement to our portfolio of enterprise services and solutions.” He added the deal will “allow us to instantly and dramatically amplify our growth in the global enterprise market.”

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In addition to enhancing its ability to serve large and mid-sized enterprises, the move will better position Comcast Business to serve growing demand for remote work solutions which has been spurred by the Covid-19 pandemic. Comcast Business made an earlier foray into this space, rolling out a VPN service for teleworkers with HPE’s Aruba in October 2020 and adding Cisco Meraki as an alternative option in February. It also offers SD-WAN products alongside Versa Networks.

Masergy, meanwhile, debuted two SD-WAN-based work from anywhere products in October 2020. It subsequently beefed up its secure access service edge (SASE) capabilities by integrating Fortinet’s cloud firewalls across its global points-of-presence and last month trotted out new technology which helps minimize packet loss over public broadband.

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Roy Chua, founder and principal with research firm AvidThink, told Fierce the acquisition will “allow Comcast to upscale their products and services to address the Fortune 500 and Global 2000 for their edge connectivity and security needs.” He added “There will be some integration and rationalization between Comcast's Versa-powered SASE/SD-WAN services and Masergy's platform, but overall this should be viewed as a positive.”

“I don't expect that this represents a threat on day one to AT&T, Verizon and other major players, but Comcast now has a broader platform, with managed services, that it can build  on to win WAN transformation and WFH projects for small, medium and large enterprises,” Chua said.

The deal follows several other recent acquisitions of SD-WAN providers. Last year, Juniper Networks bought SD-WAN vendor 128 Technology for $450 million, while Palo Alto Networks purchased CloudGenix and HPE acquired Silver Peak for its Aruba portfolio. Earlier deals included Cisco’s purchase of Viptela and VMware’s acquisition of VeloCloud, both in 2017.