According analyst firm Gartner, Cisco ranks second only to Riverbed in revenue for WAN optimization controllers. Gartner's figures for the first quarter 2007 (published this month) show Cisco with $27.8 million in revenue from its WAN optimization wares, compared with Riverbed's $22.6 million, Packeteer's $24.7 million, Blue Coat's $16.2 million, and Juniper's $12 million.
Gartner puts the entire market for the first quarter 2007 at $156.3 million -- tiny potatoes compared with the billions spent on disk storage systems, for example. (See IDC Sizes Up Disk Storage.)
And Gartner's first-quarter figures indicate that every major player but Riverbed and Cisco suffered double-digit sequential revenue declines: Packeteer was down more than 25 percent, Blue Coat 19 percent, and Juniper more than 15 percent.
Eric Wolford, Riverbed's SVP of marketing and business development, says the market's young but growing. "It's still early in the game and the future is still much larger than the past," he says. He estimates that of 6 to 7 million remote offices worldwide, penetration of WAN optimizers is in the "low single digits." But he characterizes growth as "fast."
Another analyst firm, Infonetics Research, reported that the WAN optimization market dropped 4 percent in international revenues to $106 million in the first quarter of 2007. (See WAN Optimization Heats Up.) That figure does not include Cisco, since that vendor does not supply specific figures, according to Infonetics. But the market total was nonetheless up 61 percent from a year ago. And by 2010, Infonetics predicts the market will reach $652 million. In 2006, it was $333 million, Infonetics states.