The first tranch of companies to offer enterprise colocation facilities were almost entirely carrier-dependent ? so they promoted their own networks ? this in effect locked the customers to one network which proved advantageous both commercially and indeed for network fail over/resilience . Interxion was founded with the intention of providing a carrier-neutral environment, where corporations, ISPs, ASPs, SSPs and others could form an eco-system unencumbered by commercial bias towards one network. Interxion an early entrant into the market, built data centres in Amsterdam, London, Frankfurt and Paris and, eventually, 20 across 11 countries in Western Europe.
Anthony Foy compares the Interxion carrier independent data centre model to that of an airport. One company builds, owns and operates the airport infrastructure and ensures that it is working 24/7 for passengers and service providers [Interxion data centres provide the infrastructure and power, cooling, security etc for its clients] which lots of airlines [carriers] then use to greater or lesser degrees to transport people [clients data] and to station their planes [equipment].
Carriers benefit from co-locating at Interxion data centres, as they have the attraction aggregating bandwidth requirements of customers located at Interxion. The presence at the Interxion Data Centre also offers infinite cross-connectivity and peering opportunities (very few networks operate in isolation!), while the corporate and SIs like the idea of being able to shop around for services from anything up to 100 carriers all located under one roof to drive operational efficiency as well as ensuring that their IT infrastructure is scalable and available at all times.
The enterprise market now understands the value proposition of the carrier independent data centre and the importance of selecting data centres that have the capacity both in power and space to service there requirements now and in the future and as a result the company enjoys the position as one of Europe's number one provider of premium carrier-neutral data centre and managed services. The company operates, 20 data centres featuring 32,000 m2 of raised floor across 13 cities and spanning 11 European countries, giving it the most extensive pan European reach and currently supports 1,000 unique customers including enterprises, systems integrators, Internet Service Providers, hosting and telecommunications companies.
As with any major infrastructure building a data centre requires some serious capital investment not just in the physical building but also in power and redundancy. Running costs are can be millions of euros per annum, so it's not too difficult to understand why with pressure to reduce total cost of ownership and the increasing reliance of IT as a back bone that many enterprises are happy to take advantage of the £300 million investment Interxion has made to date.
Looking forward, Foy believes that the demand for Interxion's services can only increase as the biggest IT refresh since Y2K gets under way. Described elsewhere in DCS as ?The Perfect Storm', the deployment of blade servers and the attendant power and cooling demands, and the rapid deployment of broadband and IP services, all play to Interxion's strengths. Furthermore, according to Foy, there's not actually that much suitable land available for building new data centres in key markets ? especially when power demand is taken into account. He states: "many DC operators have run out of space for example some in London and Paris have virtually sold out, and the same situation will apply in Amsterdam and Frankfurt in one to two years' time."
However, the sites Interxion selected for its data centres across Europe are generally able to access the large amounts of power required in today blade rich environment and importantly can be extended on their current sites? for example the Interxion London site has a 13MW capability and the raised floor can be doubled in sized at it current location . This capability across the majority of its sites in Europe is, perhaps, the deciding factor when it comes to predicting Interxion's future growth.
If power and cooling are, perhaps, the current buzz topic, thanks in no small part to volatile energy prices and the apparently irresistible momentum behind the global environmental lobby at the present time, As Foy explains, where once data centres required 1.75kW/m2 of power, 5kW/m2 is now the norm these can peak event higher as the adoption of blade servers cerate a ?seismic change'. In data centre design and operation both in the carrier independent DC community and corporate data centre community.
With this in mind the company has continued to build out its data centres to ensure that they are able to deliver on requirements set by high density and blade server computing environments now and in the future.
Tags: Hosting & Colocation, Power & Cooling