Paris: Where Digital Acceleration and Sustainable Business Intersect

For businesses looking to thrive in Europe and connect across the globe, there’s nowhere quite like Paris

Régis Castagné
Paris: Where Digital Acceleration and Sustainable Business Intersect

Whether it’s art, fashion, sport, cuisine or architecture, Paris occupies the imaginations of so many across the world for so many reasons. For lifelong residents and first-time visitors alike, Paris is as much an idea as it is a city.

With “Paris the idea” looming so large in our minds, it’s easy to forget what “Paris the city” really is: it’s one of the economic powerhouses of Europe, and headquarters to 29 corporations from the Fortune Global 500. It’s the largest metropolitan area in the European Union, with a population that’s growing more diverse and multicultural every day. It’s a vital center for digital ecosystem connectivity, part of what we at Equinix call the “digital silk road”. And perhaps most importantly, it’s a place where government agencies, businesses and research organizations are coming together to combat the effects of climate change and make a sustainable future possible.

For all these reasons and more, I am proud to call myself a Parisian, just as I am proud to help bring the best of Equinix to my hometown.

Why Choose Paris Data Centers?

Paris offers access to one of Europe’s largest consumer markets and is a hub for the exchange of internet traffic between the United States and Europe.

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Paris Data Centers

What makes Paris a leading location for digital ecosystems?

According to data from the Global Interconnection Index (GXI) Volume 5, Paris will grow interconnection bandwidth at a 47% CAGR rate by 2024—faster than any other core metro in Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA). This means that Paris alone will account for 12% of the total interconnection bandwidth mix across the entire EMEA region. These statistics provide quantifiable evidence for what so many of us in the Paris business community already know: that digital ecosystems in and around the city are thriving, driven both by homegrown businesses expanding and global enterprises and service providers moving in to take advantage of everything Paris has to offer.

The GXI showed that Paris is a leading metro in many different industries, but that it plays a particularly important role in business and professional services, energy and utilities, and transportation. This industry leadership is reflected by the city’s interconnection bandwidth profile: Paris drives a higher proportion of its interconnection bandwidth from business partner connectivity than many other metros in the region.

The lower-than-average proportion of interconnection driven by cloud providers highlights a key growth opportunity. Several French companies are working to address this issue by partnering with global hyperscalers to offer sovereign cloud services. These services will help businesses take advantage of modern digital capabilities while also meeting the unique regulatory requirements of France and the EU.

Connecting France to the globe

While the important position Paris occupies within the economy of France is undeniable, it’s also a key point of connection between Western Europe and the wider world. France’s position on the English Channel, Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea makes it a crossroads for subsea cables moving internet traffic between continents. The proximity of Paris to several different coastlines—along with its vast consumer base—makes it a logical endpoint for subsea cable traffic coming from multiple directions.

On the Atlantic coast, Bordeaux has emerged as one of the most important landing points for subsea cables between the U.S. and Europe. This includes the recently launched AMITIE and Dunant cables, both of which have higher capacity than all other transatlantic subsea cable systems. On the Mediterranean coast, Marseille is the unquestioned leader among subsea cable landing stations connecting Europe with Africa and the Middle East. Cables that land at Marseille include 2Africa, the largest subsea cable project in the world. 2Africa connects points across 33 countries in Africa, the Middle East, Europe, and the Indian subcontinent. Both Bordeaux and Marseille are accessible to Paris via low-latency fiber connectivity.

Finally, we mustn’t forget that the first subsea cables were laid back in 1850 to connect Paris with London via telegraph. Even all these years later, the English Channel subsea cable corridor remains a vital point of connection between two of Europe’s leading digital hubs. This is illustrated by the CrossChannel cable, which launched in 2021 to provide connectivity of over 20 terabits per fiber pair between London and Paris, setting a new standard for low latency.

All this is just to say that businesses deploying digital infrastructure in Paris will not only be able to tap into a dense ecosystem of enterprises and service providers within the metro, but will also be able to take advantage of low-latency connections to North America, Africa and the Middle East. This global connectivity can unlock opportunities to get closer to customers in new places or drive innovation through new partnerships.

Equinix supports digital acceleration and sustainability with a new investment in Paris

The recent announcement of the new Equinix PA10 data center demonstrates the ongoing commitment Equinix has made to help our French customers get the digital infrastructure they need to thrive in a changing business landscape. PA10 is part of the €1 billion Equinix plans to invest in France over the next 5 years, on top of the €1.2 billion we’ve already invested in the country.

I’m personally excited to announce this new development because it comes at a time that’s really driving home how vital digital infrastructure is, both for France and the world. We saw how digital services enabled us to continue working, learning and entertaining ourselves during the pandemic. As we look toward the future, digital will continue to play an essential role in helping us drive post-pandemic economic recovery.

However, I also feel strongly that this economic recovery must not come at the expense of the environment. I’m happy to say that Equinix is committed to driving digital acceleration in a sustainable way. We believe that industry needs to take an active, collaborative role in helping government agencies set and meet aggressive sustainability goals. The PA10 announcement is just one example out of many that shows how we’re putting our Future First sustainability strategy into action.

When complete, the PA10 data center will be home to many cutting-edge sustainability innovations, including a heat-recovery project that will redistribute energy from customer equipment in the data center to the local urban heating network. The roof of the facility will feature a greenhouse with a hydroponic system to grow fruit and vegetables. The design of the greenhouse aims to reduce water consumption by retaining rainwater, utilizing a water recovery system, and only irrigating areas currently under cultivation. In addition to reducing waste heat emissions, the rooftop greenhouse will help limit the amount of water released into local sewers.

Rendering of Equinix PA10 International Business Exchange (IBX) in Paris, France

In support of the Choose France initiative, today's investment and expansion serves to bolster the country's digital infrastructure capabilities, providing local and multi-national corporations with a foundational source of differentiation and the global platform needed to thrive in today's digital economy. Equinix is connecting digital leaders, enabling them to simplify operations, improve customer experience and accelerate the launch of new products and services." - Charles Meyers, President and CEO, Equinix

PA10 will join our existing lineup of Equinix International Business Exchange™ (IBX®) data centers in Paris, which includes three densely networked campuses in Saint-Denis, Aubervilliers and Pantin, as well as a single data center in Courbevoie. Businesses looking to expand in Paris will be able to take advantage of direct, private interconnection with extremely low latency to more than 1,200 direct customers and channel partners already colocated in Equinix Paris data centers, while also reaching thousands more via the Equinix global partner ecosystem.

Equinix Paris IBX data centers

Equinix Paris 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.
  • Equinix Managed Services – Solve network, security, data, application and multicloud challenges with our team of experts that provide data center solutions and managed services. We offer access to major cloud platforms, including Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure.

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 Paris, or contact sales today to get started.

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In the video “Why Choose Paris?”, I met with Lionel Grotto, CEO of Choose Paris Region, to discuss the benefits of doing business in the Paris metro.



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