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Cloud Strategies

GTT Ready to Bust Out

Rapid growth, largely by acquisition, has landed GTT Communications among the top five Internet transport companies globally, but the company is still a relative unknown as a marketing entity. That may be about to change.

Even in an industry known for its M&A activity, GTT Communications Inc. may have set something of a record, acquiring seven service providers in a matter of a few years: WBS Connect, PacketExchange, nLayer Communications, IP network Tinet from Inteliquent, UNSi, the managed services business of MegaPath and OneSource Networks. (See GTT to Acquire One Source Networks, GTT Buys MegaPath's Managed Services Unit, GTT Acquires More Cloud Prowess and GTT Snaps Up PacketExchange for $20M.)

That exponential growth created a significant player in the global IP transit and WAN services market for both wholesale and enterprise, as well as a managed services entity and a unified communications player, thanks to the OneVoice deal, and a global SIP trunking network.

"All of that gives you a product portfolio that is very complete," notes Gina Nomellini, GTT's chief marketing officer since joining the company in the OneSource acquisition. "We continue to build on and harden that product set as well as build out the access footprint and infrastructure."

The company is still aggressively adding points of presence -- it added two Middle Eastern PoPs this week via an announcement with GBI. (See GTT, GBI Team on Middle East Connectivity.)

Already it is among the top five in Internet traffic globally, she says, and competes with the largest telecom providers for multinational client business.


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At this point, however, GTT really wants to raise its corporate profile and is focusing heavily on being the best at delivering cloud connections, she says. The company offers seamless direct connections to the most popular clouds including Amazon Web Services Inc. , Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT) Azure and Salesforce.com Inc. , among others.

"The overall company tagline is any location in the world and any application in the cloud," Nomellini says. "We want to be a better way to reach the cloud."

That "better way" mostly involves what GTT calls simplicity, speed and agility. The company offers both Layer 2 VPNs and Layer 3 MPLS connectivity to the cloud, and it offers what it calls "burstable private network services." That allows customers to have a full port available to them but pay for their actual network usage over that port, she says. It combines the burstability of best-effort services with the security and performance of a dedicated private line.

And GTT is upgrading its single-vendor network -- all built on Juniper -- at the core, to add capacity. In addition to a single vendor for data gear, GTT also has a hard-core philosophy on integrating acquisitions at the back office level -- it's done in two quarters, no questions asked -- so that there is a single back office system as well for provisioning, customer care, billing etc.

The real challenge now is packaging the full range of its capabilities for customers and getting the word out, something Nomellini says is starting to happen and will ramp up further throughout 2016.

— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading

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