Doing Business From Zurich, Where Everything Runs Like Clockwork

A prosperous, interconnected and sustainable metro market for digital business

Roger Semprini
Doing Business From Zurich, Where Everything Runs Like Clockwork

Zurich is my hometown; it is where I was born and grew up. Zurich is the city of banks, luxury, art, great contrasts and diversity, and a melting pot of countless nations. It also has one of the highest standards of living in the world, with international universities and colleges—pulsating and tranquil at the same time. Zurich is a small cosmopolitan city with its own lake and a local mountain (Üetliberg) and its own vineyards and forests. It’s simply a city with an international character, where people of all cultures, origins and beliefs, as well as companies in all industries and ecosystems, meet. In a nutshell, Zurich represents everything Switzerland as a country stands for: international business and culture, beauty and community.

Why Swiss and multinational organizations are banking on Switzerlandand especially Zurich

A multicultural society, Switzerland is the model of diversity, coexistence and connection. Bordering five countries, Switzerland has four national languages (German, French, Italian and Romansh) and 38% of the Swiss population has a migration background.[i] Famous for their punctuality, the Swiss are also leaders in the business world—the country has the second-most competitive economy in Europe and the highest number of Forbes 2000 companies per capita in Europe, including Credit Suisse, Garmin, Logitech, Nestlé, Roche and UBS, just to name a few.

Switzerland is home to the European headquarters of a number of world organizations, such as the United Nations, World Trade Organization, World Health Organization, World Economic Forum, the Geneva Convention, and CERN—the European Organization for Nuclear Research. A good business environment, favorable tax regime, liberal labor market, and economic, political and social stability make Switzerland a favorable partner for growing regional and global businesses.

Zurich is the largest city in Switzerland, with a metro population of approximately 434,335 inhabitants (as of January 2020) and the fourth-highest talent concentration in Europe. With the second-highest gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in Europe, Zurich is ranked third in the European Economy Global Power City Index. As a mega financial hub, Zurich’s financial sector generates around a third of the wealth and a quarter of the jobs in the city. In fact, 42% of Swiss banking employees are in Zurich, with 1 in 3 banks headquartered there.

Why Choose Zurich Data Centers?

Our Zurich International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers are strategically located in the heart of one of Europe's largest financial markets. You can reach 80% of Europe with a 30 ms round trip.

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A sustainability, technology and industry center

Zurich is the most sustainable city in the world, with an ecosystem of 14,800 cleantech companies—the largest of any Swiss region—and contributes 16% of Switzerland’s $58 billion (B) cleantech revenue. Switzerland maintains low clean energy costs and is committed to preserving energy security and sustainability, ranking third in the Environmental Performance Index.

According to IDC, 65% of Swiss companies are planning, piloting or implementing digital transformation processes and solutions[ii] and new European Commission policies are aimed at pushing the growth of the digital economy. This could explain why Switzerland’s information and communications technology (ICT) sector generates $31B in value add, of which Zurich contributes 35%. The Zurich ICT sector consists of 5,300+ firms that employ 25% of Swiss ICT personnel.

Other key verticals include pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, commodity trading and luxury goods. And multiple industries are coming up in Zurich. There are 1,000+ life science firms in Zurich, and the sector has grown at over 8% a year since 2000. The metro also has the largest mechanical, electrical and metal (MEM) sector ecosystem in Switzerland (180+ global firms). Zurich is also the home of the largest proportion of creative firms—comprising 33% of Switzerland’s creative industry value, which generates $9B in annual revenue and contributes to its growing content and digital media (CDM) sector.

A gateway to the world

Switzerland serves as a gateway to Europe for many Fortune 500 and small and midsized companies regionally and around the world. In fact, 1,600+ American companies already operate in Switzerland. Ranked number two in the Global Connectivity Index, Switzerland is also number one in the world in broadband subscriptions per 100 people and the second-most 5G-ready country in Europe. Data privacy and protection are key to all companies doing business in Switzerland. This explains why private interconnection bandwidth in Zurich is projected to grow annually at 50% between 2020 and 2024, according to the Global Interconnection Index (GXI) Volume 5, a market study published by Equinix.

Equinix Zurich is uniquely positioned as the leading international interconnection and data center provider in the Swiss market, with the greatest number of on-ramps to all the major cloud and IT service providers—more than 70 companies including AWS, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure. Our Zurich data centers offer connectivity to SIX Swiss Exchange, Switzerland’s leading stock exchange, and to the country’s two largest internet exchanges, Equinix Internet Exchange™ (more than 40 participants) and SwissIX. On Platform Equinix®, businesses can also choose from a broad range of network services from 90+ providers. The central location of the Equinix Zurich data centers is ideal for network service providers who deliver into the banking district, and for companies based in this European financial services and media powerhouse.

Our Zurich International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers are business hubs for 300+ businesses that participate in vibrant industry ecosystems such as enterprise (250+), financial services (50+) and CDM (20+). Swiss and global companies on Platform Equinix can enable on-demand and direct access to cloud, network, storage, compute and application service providers around the world—from the digital core to the edge—via Equinix Fabric™ software-defined interconnection.

Equinix Zurich IBX Data Centers

The Equinix Zurich metro IBX data centers consist of four buildings with more than 100,000 square feet (10,050 square meters) of colocation space and are compliant with key international standards including ISO 9001: 2008 for quality management systems and ISO 27001 for information security management. The ZH5 data center is Gold LEED certified for environmental sustainability. Equinix’s low-cost, high-density 100% green energy increases efficiency and reduces our customers’ carbon footprint, while providing an uninterruptable power supply with built-in redundancy. The Equinix Zurich data centers are also interconnected to the two Equinix Geneva IBX facilities, bringing the two expanding metros together to create a national digital business center.

All the right places, partners and possibilities

On Platform Equinix, you can quickly and simply deploy digital infrastructure around the world to interconnect digital core, ecosystem and edge locations for network optimization, hybrid multicloud, distributed data and security, and application exchange. Equinix’s global footprint provides multiple points of presence (PoPs) proximate to employees, partners and customers, where you can harness direct and secure, high-speed, low-latency connections for the best possible user experience. For example, you can build next-generation SD-WAN architectures for more flexible, scalable, secure and reliable connectivity to network, cloud and IT provider ecosystem partners and users at edge locations. 

Equinix Zurich allows customers to deploy and connect digital infrastructure from the core to the edge by leveraging a wide range of IT services, including:

  • Equinix Fabric – Connect digital infrastructure and services on demand at software speed via secure, software-defined interconnection across multiple metro locations. If you’re already on Equinix Fabric, you can expand to locations where your employees, partners and customers have a presence.
  • Network Edge – Modernize your network and deploy digital-ready infrastructure from leading providers at the edge virtually, in minutes.
  • Equinix Metal™ – Deploy interconnected, automated bare metal as a service and leverage physical infrastructure on demand, and scale up and down based on the ebb and flow of your business needs.
  • Equinix Connect™ – Gain internet access through multiple internet service providers (ISPs) in one place, under one contract.
  • Equinix Internet Exchange – Exchange internet traffic through the largest global peering solution across multiple markets.
  • IBX SmartViewTM – Access operating and environmental data relevant to your IBX data center footprint in real time.

As the world’s digital infrastructure company™, Equinix delivers a trusted global platform that brings together and interconnects the foundational infrastructure that fuels digital leaders’ success. Learn more about how you can grow your regional or global business at Equinix Zurich.

You may also want to read the IDC white paper, sponsored by Equinix:
An Effective Cloud Approach for a Value-driven Digital Strategy by Matthias Zacher, Senior Consulting Manager, Germany & Switzerland, IDC.



[i] Population | Federal Statistical Office (

[ii] IDC, “An Effective Cloud Approach for a Value-driven Digital Strategy,” Matthias Zacher, Senior Consulting Manager, Germany & Switzerland.

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Roger Semprini Managing Director, Equinix Switzerland
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