ACG Research

ACG Research
We focus on the Why before the What

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Cisco’s Network Convergence System: Building the Foundation for the Internet of Everything

Cisco Network Convergence System is a family of integrated packet routing and transport systems designed to help service providers capture their share of the Internet of Everything Value at Stake. NCS is built on major innovations in silicon, optics and software and provides the building blocks of a multilayer converged network that intelligently manages and scales functions across its architecture. 

ACG Research analyzed the business case for NCS and found it achieves massive scale via multichassis system architecture, the density and performance of its new chip set, and the extension of the control plane to virtual machines internally and externally. Fully virtualized software improves service velocity and asset utilization by creating a cloud model inside the platforms. Virtualization also supports orders of magnitude improvement in system availability and security through the isolation and independence of software operations. Optical innovations lower multichassis interconnect costs and optimize wavelength density and cost. Click here to download Michael Kennedy's whitepaper.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Fixed/Mobile Convergence Draws Near

Long anticipated, it now appears that the boundaries between fixed and mobile network infrastructure are fading. Demand for steadily increasing bandwidth coupled with service providers' urgent need to control costs is forcing convergence of network infrastructure, while widespread and enthusiastic adoption of wireless devices in all market segments (wireline, mobile, enterprise and consumer) is further blurring the service boundaries. Read more at FierceTelecom.

Monday, September 9, 2013

Are You a Low Risk or High Risk Vendor?

ACG Research’s 2Q Vendor Financial report indicates that Adtran, Cisco and Juniper have the lowest risk of 11 vendors analyzed.

Using publicly validated financial data as input, ACG Research calculated 11 sustainability and operation ratios and Altman Z-Score to determine 11 vendors’ financial risk. Based on the score, vendors were segmented as low risk, medium risk or high risk. Vendors falling into the low risk segment are Adtran, Cisco and Juniper. 

What makes a company low risk? These companies have high operating margins, solid revenue, and high equity to debt ratio. They also have stable revenue sources and operating margins because of sales, solid gross margin, and expense discipline. These companies continue to increase momentum with new product offerings, acquisitions as well as refining their strategy of innovating in high-performance networking.

High risk vendors are characterized by low receivable efficiency, low operating margin and financing assets with more debt than equity. Their ratios indicate that their business practices, for example, in extending credits and collecting debts, are less efficient than their competitors. They also have low inventory turnover, indicating inefficient inventory management. Investments in research and development also tend to be low. 

Why is assessing risk important to a provider? Technology, although important, should not be the only criteria by which to judge a vendor. Sustainability of a vendor is equally as important for making a business decision. Knowing a vendor’s sustainability gives providers one more piece of information to assess the risk of selecting the right vendor to meet their current and most importantly their future business requirements. It also allows providers to make decisions based on the stability of the vendor regardless of technology innovations. 

For more information about ACG’s Telecom Vendor Index service, contact

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

What's the Network Market Look Like for Optical Equipment?

Because of the inherent advantages of optical technology, it has become the standard foundation for practically all network types. This, in turn, makes the optical equipment market a very competitive arena, one that has grown to almost 20 vendors. The vendor list includes both the well-known incumbent players that have been around for decades as well as newer entrants that are offering a different approach or value proposition to provide optical connectivity and control. Read more at TechTarget.

For more information about ACG's optical services, contact

         Jeff Ogle   

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

SDN Needs Versatile Northbound APIs for Cloud Integration

WANs using SDN are getting tighter integration with cloud providers' XaaS platforms by putting APIs into their SDNs to interact with cloud management systems and automatically adapt network policies to cloud services' needs.  With SDN operators could make their WANs (VPNs, for example) work as smoothly with cloud XaaS as internal data center networks are starting to do already (with OpenStack Neutron APIs and integration via on-switch gateways with VMware NSX). It encouraging developers in each domain (WAN SDN and cloud DC) to be close collaborators, delivering superior results. Read more.

For more information about ACG Research's cloud service, contact