3 Ways Equinix Has Expanded Interconnection in Europe and What’s Ahead

Eric Schwartz

Global expansion is critical for Equinix to deliver interconnection. Why? A key attribute of interconnection is that it brings customers as close as possible to their markets and users, where data is being generated. Proximity to that data, supply chain partners and users results in the lowest-latency connectivity possible for increased performance and user experience. But to offer that kind of proximity, interconnection needs to be available in more markets around the globe. As a result, Equinix expands continuously and carefully – to give customers the most choice of what markets they can deploy in. Our expansion activity in EMEA in the first half of 2017 is more proof of how committed we are to this strategy.

In the last month, we opened new data centers in Amsterdam and Frankfurt. Plus, we announced that we are launching Equinix Cloud Exchange™ into Milan. Given that we are half way through the year, it is a good time to take a look back but also anticipate where enterprises will require more interconnection in the future.

Milan gets deeper into cloud

The Cloud Exchange’s debut in Milan this fall will be a significant marker in Milan’s development as a European cloud center. The Cloud Exchange enables companies to make direct, simultaneous, virtualized connections to multiple cloud providers from a single port. Basically, Milan-based companies now have the power to access whatever cloud services they need, when they need them. And for existing multi-national customers this also means cloud access in a new market using the same exchange fabric already available in 20+ markets globally. In an Italian cloud market expected to grow at 22% annually to 2020, that matters.

The Cloud Exchange will be hosted inside Equinix’s three-building Milan campus. Each building is connected by high-speed cable, so being inside one is like being inside them all. And the campus itself hosts more than 220 companies and 150 network carriers. It’s a rich choice of potential partners and customers for companies building a hybrid or multi-cloud future.

Amsterdam expands opportunities at the digital edge

Our new AM4 facility in Amsterdam is an impressive, 12-story building located in a globally regarded tech facility, Science Park Amsterdam. The park is a low-latency entryway to Europe – companies there can reach 80% of the continent within 50 milliseconds. AM4 also offers local access to more than 700 companies, leading cloud service providers and the AMS-IX and NL-IX exchanges.

AM4 also aims to help our customers thrive at the digital edge, where commence, population centers and digital ecosystems meet. The clouds, people, locations and data that companies need to connect to are all there – it’s essentially where business gets done. Companies today need to deploy their IT to the digital edge on a global scale, and the addition of AM4 expands our customers’ ability to do that directly and securely.

Frankfurt strengthens its financial hub standing

Frankfurt is a European financial capital, and the recent opening of Equinix’s new flagship data center in this international city was a move to ensure the firms there have the interconnection they need to innovate and grow.

The region hosts more than 400,000 business, including 200 banks, 80% of which are non-domestic. These businesses are increasingly interconnected and cloud-enabled, and FR6 was built to meet their rapidly accelerating demand for interconnection. Located at Campus Klyer, it is among the world’s most carrier-dense data centers, which is critical for a financial services hub. The campus also has partnerships allowing direct connection with the world’s largest internet exchange, DE-CIX. The addition of FR6 bolsters the Equinix Frankfurt campus as a gateway to global trading opportunities, firms and venues.

The importance of expanding interconnection

It’s clear that our EMEA expansions are getting our customers closer to the people and things they most need to interact most with, but interconnection is about much more than proximity in a digital age. Some other key characteristics of interconnection speak to why it’s so critical to business:

  • Digital Ecosystem Density enables the many-to-many connectivity that companies simply can’t do business without in a digital world, where simultaneous and instantaneous connectivity with numerous partners is required for even basic business tasks.
  • Direct interconnection is a critical requirement, because no other type of connection is faster, higher-performing or more secure.
  • Distributed delivery of interconnection via globally dispersed exchange points is directly related to scaling interconnection to meet the necessary proximity and expansion requirements of a global digital economy. In our case, these exchange points are housed in Equinix colocation facilities. It’s essential that these exchange points are at the digital edge and are globally disseminated to allow access to direct and secure interconnection wherever it’s needed.

At Equinix, we’re not only deeply invested in the value of interconnection, but we’re seeing the dawning of a broader realization of its importance in providing superior, anytime, anywhere connectivity in the digital age. Companies are realizing interconnection isn’t optional, it’s essential. They’re learning that succeeding in today’s digital economy means considering their readiness to satisfy their own organization’s interconnection demands, and crafting a proactive strategy to ensure they’ll meet it not only today, but into the future.

Read more about designing interconnection-first IT architectures in our Interconnection Strategy Guide.

Eric Schwartz
Eric Schwartz President, Equinix EMEA