Brocade sets up SDN and NFV research team in UK

Brocade is to base a new SDN and NFV research and development team in the UK

Brocade has set up a UK-based research and development (R&D) team to augment its US efforts and bring new software-defined networking (SDN) and network functions virtualisation (NFV) systems to market.

In a blog posted on Brocade’s website, vice-president of software networking Kelly Herrell said it was important to take a more global perspective to tech R&D.

“We kicked off the new year by bringing on board an entire team of the UK’s most experienced and technically skilled research and development engineers and leaders to work on the development of our SDN and NFV portfolio, and specifically the Brocade Vyatta vRouter,” he said.

The team will be based at two different Brocade facilities just outside London and in Edinburgh. 

“We firmly believe that the future of the network lies in a new IP [internet protocol] – one that includes intelligent, agile software," she said. "This new approach will be built upon dynamic technologies, with increased automation that leverages virtualisation, open architectures and ecosystems.”

The expansion of its R&D efforts in the UK comes in the wake of Brocade’s recent acquisition of Riverbed Technology’s SteelApp virtual application delivery control (ADC) product line.

SteelApp, which will ultimately become part of Brocade’s software networking business unit under Herrell, was predominantly developed in the UK.

Brocade has acquired the product lines for an all-cash asset transaction, along with development and field personnel, to extend its software portfolio and enable more advanced systems for its datacentre and service provider customers.

ADCs provide application availability, acceleration and security, shielding users from interruption due to spikes in demand, optimising performance based on application type and facilitating policy-based access.

Brocade believes deploying that functionality in a virtualised software environment make ADCs more flexible and cost-effective in the enterprise.

The firm said the ADC segment was widely considered to be the first major element of networking to transition from hardware to virtualised software, with a recent Dell’Oro report saying virtual ADC shipments were growing at 30% year-on-year while hardware ADC shipments were flatlining.

Herrell said Brocade would continue to drive world-leading SDN performance benchmarks on Intel hardware, offering a wide range of virtual network functions and maintaining its commitment to OpenDaylight.

Read more on Software-defined networking (SDN)

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