Cloud Expansion in Europe Accelerates Digital Transformation

Eric Schwartz

Cloud expansion in Europe is a greenfield opportunity for cloud service providers (CSPs). In 2016, 21% of European Union (EU) enterprises used cloud computing, a 10% increase compared to 2014, according to Eurostat. Twice as many firms used public clouds versus private clouds, and 51% of the organizations used clouds to drive financial and accounting software applications, customer relationship management or for compute power to run business applications.

As we have seen in many parts of the world, cloud computing is a catalyst for digital transformation and European enterprises are no different. This is why last week’s announcement that we are expanding the Equinix Cloud Exchange in three key European markets – Dublin, Milan and Stockholm – is so exciting. Additionally, Microsoft Azure and Office 365 will soon be available on the Irish Equinix Cloud Exchange™ to address the rapidly growing cloud market in Ireland. This advanced interconnection solution will serve more than 50% of enterprise cloud needs in Ireland by providing customers with direct access to the biggest global cloud service providers, including Microsoft.

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Expanding the Cloud Exchange into these three new markets, which build on the strength of the five existing European Cloud Exchange markets (London, Frankfurt, Amsterdam, Paris and Zurich), will give more European businesses the ability to access low-latency, private cloud connectivity without going over the public internet or a private WAN. Bringing direct and secure access to a rich ecosystem of CSPs will enable global enterprises in these markets to simultaneously orchestrate hybrid and multi-cloud solutions across multiple locations and gain the global scale, performance and security they need to compete. These three new markets will also provide companies with additional flexibility to locate their cloud workloads and data across the region to suit their specific business needs and local regulations. This flexible access to multiple CSPs will be especially advantageous for European organizations that are undergoing digital transformation as they grow their businesses on a global scale.

The Equinix Cloud Exchange is an advanced interconnection solution that enables seamless, on-demand, access to multiple clouds across the globe. By bringing together multiple CSPs and enterprises, and enabling them to establish private, high-performance, virtualized connections, the Equinix Cloud Exchange gives enterprises direct and secure access to the services they need to build sophisticated hybrid and multi-cloud solutions inside Equinix International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers.

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Equinix data centers house a growing cloud ecosystem with access to more than 500 CSPs, including Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, IBM SoftLayer, Microsoft Azure/Office 365, Oracle Cloud, VMware vCloud Air and Salesforce. This interconnected approach provides proximity between clouds, networks and enterprises, allowing companies to boost cloud application performance, reduce latency, scale and improve network control and visibility – delivering a quality cloud experience to end users.

Since its initial launch in 2014, more than 625 businesses have connected globally to the Equinix Cloud Exchange including Aon, Beeks Financial Cloud, CDM Smith, Ellie Mae, SAP and Walmart. Equinix has continued to see strong demand for cloud connectivity – year-over-year growth of Equinix Cloud Exchange more than doubled from 2015 to 2016.

Equinix will roll out Cloud Exchange in the following key European metros:

  • Dublin (available March) – Global volumes of data are mushrooming, presenting both indigenous and foreign direct investment (FDI) companies with an abundance of opportunity that is unique to Ireland. Coupled with the country’s favorable corporate tax structure, data privacy laws and potential for mining big data, Ireland continues to be an attractive destination for business infrastructure.
  • Milan (available September) – Milan is the economic and financial heart of Italy and is the country’s second largest city, playing a vital role in the Italian economy, which is the third largest in the Eurozone.
  • Stockholm (available September) – Stockholm’s status as a key international business and technology hub is growing dramatically. The city has been ranked as a top “future region” by the Financial Times, as well as Europe’s best region in terms of prospects for inward investment and for economic and business expansion.

Now more Europe-based businesses can leverage the performance, security and consistent quality of experience that only direct and secure connectivity can deliver.

Read “Home of the Interconnected Cloud,” to learn more about how the Equinix Cloud Exchange is enabling companies to transform into digital businesses.