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Koch Industries Executes Network Cloud Transformation

March 10, 2021

Koch Industries, one of the largest private companies in America with an estimated annual revenue of $115 billion, according to Forbes, has initially deployed the combined offering of Alkira’s Cloud Services Exchange (CSX) and Palo Alto Networks VM-Series Virtual Next-Generation Firewalls to securely extend its enterprise infrastructure into the cloud. Alkira is a Palo Alto Networks Emerging Technology Partner.

Koch Industries’ global business required greater agility from its complex network infrastructure to respond quickly to its business needs across the globe. This became even more critical during operational challenges over the last year, which accelerated the company’s shift to a secure network cloud. Adding regional support was slow on provisioning and setup of network security, so Koch sought a simpler, comprehensive and faster network and security solution delivered from the cloud.

Matt Hoag, chief technology officer of Koch Business Solutions, shared: “Alkira’s Network Cloud integrated with Palo Alto Networks’ virtual firewall has enabled Koch to simply, quickly and securely expand our enterprise infrastructure to multi-cloud with an end-to-end, on-demand security offering. Alkira enables us to draw our entire end-to-end network on a digital design canvas, and provision it in one click, so it’s ready for use. With Alkira CSX there is no hardware to procure, no software to download, and no cloud to learn. The Alkira integration with Palo Alto Networks has resulted in a flexible and elastic firewall deployment with policy creation, auto-scaling of firewalls and overall reduced complexity at Koch.”

The company has deployed Alkira to rebuild parts of its cloud network backbone and transform its network infrastructure into a multi-cloud service on demand, fully integrated with Palo Alto Networks VM-Series virtual firewalls for protection against advanced network-based threats. Palo Alto Networks Panorama™ further provides consistent security policy and firewall management across all Alkira deployed VM-Series instances.

Koch’s extremely large and sophisticated network infrastructure included seven global networks supporting thousands of applications, with tens of thousands of access points, hundreds of thousands of switch ports, and thousands of routers and switches, at over 700 sites.

It takes the Koch team only minutes to configure Alkira’s network cloud and Palo Alto Networks VM-Series firewalls, and less than an hour to provision the solutions. The entire security network was set up in a few hours.

The solution can serve approximately 120,000 Koch employees doing business in more than 70 countries:

Through Alkira’s solutions, Koch can take advantage of high-speed, low-latency global network connectivity for remote users, remote sites, data centers and one or more multiple public cloud environments with end-to-end network visibility, governance and security provided by Palo Alto Networks VM-Series virtual firewalls. This enables Koch to securely make changes in the cloud network in minutes or hours vs. weeks or months.

The solution provides end-to-end policy enforcement with microsegmentation, auto scaling and intelligent symmetric routing, and it is so intuitive to use that Koch can manage deployments with no assistance from the Alkira and Palo Alto Networks teams. Koch has been especially pleased with the autonomy from vendors, the speed at which they can now conduct IT business, and their ability to redeploy Koch cloud, network and security resources to quickly address business priorities.

Muninder Singh Sambi, senior vice president, Product Management, Palo Alto Networks, offered: “Koch Industries is a great example of our approach to technology partnerships that enable our customers’ digital transformation. By integrating our best-in-class VM-Series virtual firewalls into the Alkira platform, we provide Koch Industries with a simpler, optimal solution to manage automated network security at scale and enforce consistent threat prevention policies across their complex cloud environment. This expands Koch’s ability and confidence to securely grow their cloud footprint while maintaining regulatory compliance around the world. We couldn’t be more excited about partnering with Alkira to provide these advanced capabilities within Koch Industries.”

Atif Khan, chief technology officer and founder of Alkira, had this to say: “Alkira runs Palo Alto Networks VM-Series as a service embedded in the Alkira CSX and fully manages the VM-Series lifecycle delivering the industry’s first CNaaS with integrated VM-Series security for stateful firewall security to and between cloud application workloads. Customers can deploy and configure VM-Series with a few clicks using the Alkira CSX Portal and have full end-to-end visibility into network segments and the attendant security policies. Alkira’s patent-pending, consistent hashing maintains traffic flow symmetry and customers benefit from auto scaling VM-Series instances up and down based on traffic load.”

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