Channel Insider content and product recommendations are editorially independent. We may make money when you click on links to our partners. Learn More.




Adtran (NASDAQ:ADTN) is putting on the boxing gloves and is looking to challenge the big infrastructure names such as Cisco (NASDAQ: CSCO) and Juniper (NASDAQ: JNPR) in the SMB networking market. Although Adtran is basically 1/80th the size of market giant Cisco, Adtran believes that there is significant opportunity in the 50 to 250 user space, where Adtran contends both Cisco and Juniper show some marketing weakness.

As a 100 percent channel company, Adtran will have to rely on its partners and its mix of niche products to accelerate into a highly contested market. Although Adtran offers impressive margins and excellent support, partner recruitment has always been a challenge, simply because Adtran required a significant investment in training and certification from partners, setting the bar a little too high for smaller solution providers. 

To address that channel blockage, Adtran has introduced a new Value Added Distribution (VAD) program, where the company has partnered with some of its largest VARs to convert them into distributors. That significantly reduces the challenges for smaller solution providers looking to resell Adtran products. The first company to join the VAD program is Interlink Communication Systems, an internetworking, wireless and VoIP-focused specialty distribution company representing select manufacturers to an international network of value added resellers, system integrators and network service providers. 

The idea behind the Adtran and Interlink partnership is to provide smaller solution providers with access to Adtran’s products and products that complement Adtran’s Netvanta product Line. Solution providers will be able to purchase Adtran products directly from Interlink and will also be able to buy complete solutions from Interlink, including complementary products, onsite services and so on.