Filipino Microfinance Institution Deploys SD-WAN to Boost Network Reliability and Improve the Lives of Women in Rural Communities
Riverbed®, The Digital Performance Company™, today announced that Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation (NWTF), one of the Philippines’ oldest and largest microfinance institutions, is advancing the human experience in the digital world through next-generation infrastructure from Riverbed. The solution transforms the way NWTF connects its clients to convenient, secure financial services, and to deliver a digital experience on par with larger commercialized banks. NWTF is an NGO that helps women in the country – particularly in rural communities – move out of poverty and achieve self-sufficiency and self-reliance through microloans.
NWTF’s legacy network was challenged with limited growth, agility and low digital performance; there was also limited visibility into what was happening in the network – any changes to the network had to be done manually, resulting in higher costs. As a result, the organization was limited in its ability to expand its life-changing services to reach women and communities that needed it the most.
The Riverbed solution provides NWTF with both SD-WAN and application acceleration capabilities to drastically simplify networking, improve visibility and control over IT infrastructure and accelerate the performance of applications and digital services, resulting in significant improvements in agility and user experience, while cutting cost. Achieving a more stable, reliable and secure network has enabled the non-profit to open more branches in rural areas with limited connectivity, enabling them to reach more people in need of their services.
“Connectivity in rural Philippines is spotty and unreliable at best – only 40-45% of the communities NWTF serves has a stable internet connection,” explained Raymond Serios, Assistant Director, Negros Women for Tomorrow Foundation. “Providing our clients with access to life-changing financial services required a fundamental rethink of our network. We chose to partner with Riverbed on the journey because of their market leadership as well as their simple, intelligent approach to modern networking: combining the capabilities of SD-WAN, application acceleration and visibility into a single solution and make it incredibly easy to manage.”
NWTF employees, nearly 3,500 people, serve close to 450,000 clients, and they operate in more than 150 branches across 10+ islands in the Philippines. NWTF realized the necessity to give their clients in rural areas secure access to convenient financial services, and also provide a digital experience on par with the big commercialized banks – including access to mobile banking digital services – in order to help them achieve self-sufficiency.
“Beyond the technical benefits, the Riverbed solution and the support we received from the team along the way have been instrumental in empowering us in our mission to help lift our clients out of poverty,” said Serios. “They were there every step of the way – from implementation to support to traveling to the furthest corners our operation to help us deliver an amazing experience to our clients.”