For the average business, winning contracts with household names and counting some of the biggest organisations in the world among your competitors will only ever be a pipe dream – especially if your business is just four years old. But for Xalient, this is already a reality, as the business has gone from strength to strength, securing global contracts with well-known names including Kellogg’s, Hamleys and Keurig Dr Pepper.
Xalient is an independent provider of consulting and managed IT services, established specifically to address the fast-growing software-defined security and networking systems market. The company’s mission is to empower its clients to be resilient, responsive and adaptable to change by ensuring that their businesses are robust and flexible enough to cope with the demands of the future, not just the challenges of today. Now it plans to expand its distinguished client portfolio with a significant investment from BOOST&Co.
Resilient, responsive, adaptable – how do they do it?
Every large enterprise is investing in new cloud-based systems and applications, whether they be CRM, financial or business management or sales and marketing systems. The volume of transactions carried out each day between these systems and potentially thousands of employees, based across the world, is enormous. Traditional wide-area networks were not designed for the cloud, nor were traditional network security approaches designed to protect businesses and their employees.
“Xalient’s value lies in its ability to make these business activities agile, secure and high-performing by moving clients from physical IT networks to more effective, flexible, cloud-based solutions designed specifically for today,” says Ryan Sorby, who leads BOOST&Co’s Manchester office and was the lead principal on the deal.
Traditional IT infrastructure relies on what is known as a multi-protocol label switching (MPLS) wide-area network (WAN) architecture. This means that when an employee connects to a business application, any request for information is routed first through a company’s data centre, moving through multiple points of physical infrastructure, and then out to the cloud or to a centrally hosted server (depending on where the application is located) before it makes its way back, again via the company’s physical data centre, to the employee’s location.
Xalient designs and manages solutions that typically move the company’s clients from MPLS to a virtual WAN architecture – a software-defined wide-area network (SD-WAN) – where everything is hosted in the cloud. In this scenario, when an employee connects to a business application, there is direct, secure access between each location and the cloud-hosted applications, with no need for any routing via physical infrastructure.
The technology: how cloud-based solutions benefit businesses
“The benefits of moving to an SD-WAN are numerous: speed and efficiency, direct cost savings, ultimate flexibility and enhanced security are just a few,” Sorby says. “And because the network is ‘software-defined’, it can be configured remotely, commissioned rapidly and monitored in real time. Being carrier-independent, Xalient can also offer a blend of the best locally sourced internet capacity to align with its clients’ global business requirements.”
A cloud-based networking solution is also highly secure, as SD-WAN benefits from end-to-end encryption without the high security costs that often accompany data centres and physical infrastructure. The capacity to be agile is improved, too; in a global business where some employees log on in one time zone as others log off in another, or where extra network capacity is needed temporarily to cope with business demands, bandwidth can be dynamically moved across to when and where it is needed, improving companies’ speed and efficiency.
Xalient has a broad portfolio of solutions, including SD-WAN, cybersecurity, identity management and unified communications. All are cloud-based, designed to work together seamlessly and offered as an AI-driven 24/7 managed service, taking away the pressure of complex supplier management and enabling clients’ IT departments to focus on their strategic priorities, knowing that their business and their people are safe, secure and connected.
Funding will make the company more competitive
Xalient was founded in 2015 by current chief executive Sherry Vaswani, and the company’s swift growth has been reinforced by the calibre of its customer portfolio, several strong acquisitions and the early achievement of the information security standard ISO 27001, after a single year of operation.
The investment from BOOST&Co will enable the firm to capitalise on this growth, by freeing up working capital. “Xalient has demonstrated an exciting trajectory for growth,” Sorby says. “There are few businesses with customers of such size and calibre as Xalient’s, and this investment will enable them to accelerate that growth.”
Vaswani says: “We are an ambitious global company with a strong track record of operating in a buoyant marketplace. The team at BOOST&Co came to understand our business quickly, recognised our potential for growth and saw how additional capital could help us compete for more major contracts, increase capability and support our acquisition strategy. We are delighted to have BOOST&Co as our investment partner.”
Due diligence was completed by Rob McCarthy at RSM, with legal due diligence led by Matt Ingram and Giles Chesher at Squire Patton Boggs. PwC and Mishcon de Reya supported Xalient’s management.