Extending MAREA’s capabilities to key hubs in Europe
Big Interview

Extending MAREA’s capabilities to key hubs in Europe

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Rafael Arranz, Telxius Cable Chief Operating Officer.

Q. 2020 has been a tumultuous year, to say the least. What has the year been like for Telxius so far?

 COVID-19 has posed unprecedented challenges and uncertainties on a world-wide scale. As the pandemic’s early impact started to be felt globally, there was a major surge in data traffic. We immediately implemented measures to guarantee the continuity of services while ensuring our customers, partners, and employees’ safety. In addition to the high standard of safety protocols that we already had in place, we activated a Global Contingency Plan.  Face-to-face meetings and non-essential travel were restricted. All employees moved to 100% remote work, other than those providing coverage in critical facilities to maintain and guarantee continued service.

This included our Network Operations Centers (NOCs) as well as the employees of our IP, Security and Capacity service centers, who immediately adopted the necessary measures to ensure the continuity of services to our customers. This completely virtual and unprecedented form of management, especially for such a critical part of our business like the NOCs, is the result and proof of the exhaustive preparation work carried out beforehand to adequately address this type of unexpected situation.

As an example, you can see our March 2020’s ‘Resilience capacity of landing stations,’ which thoroughly details the extensively mapped out resiliency plans in place across all of our facilities. As a result of this preparedness, Telxius maintained the service of our submarine cables and ensured that people and businesses could access the internet without interruption, guaranteeing the continuity of services for our customers. Thus we can say that at Telxius we have successfully faced the challenge of a remarkable growth in the demand for our services.

Q. The global pandemic has impacted businesses in a lot of ways, including a major surge in demand for data. How has Telxius addressed this?

As a result of the Covid-19 crisis, traffic on our subsea cables increased by 55% on average up to the end of June. To respond to this growth in demand, we increased the provision of capacity on our submarine cables by 140% compared to the same period the year before. Our teams were faced with provisioning a 150% increase in capacity on our IP ports in just one month, which was well beyond any capacity we had previously provisioned in such a short time.  At Telxius, our teams were able to increase the interconnections with content providers successfully and in record time, providing final customers with access to content, both for entertainment and online working, that were key during the pandemic.  And remarkably, all of this was done with 97% of our staff working remotely, including our two Network Operations Centers (NOCs).

Q. The Derio Communications Hub is a carrier neutral facility with remarkable interconnection capacity. Can you share any updates on the Hub?

TheDerio Communications Hub has been developed to respond to the growing demand of latest generation communication services, leveraging subsea cable MAREA’s full capacity into Europe. It is a unique combination of an expanded cable landing station and a PoP, the first of its kind in Spain, offering IP, Capacity, Colocation and Security services for global companies, carriers, content providers or OTTs.

The Derio hub is strategically located in Bilbao, Spain, only a few kilometers away from the MAREA subsea cable landing point. MAREA is currently the lowest latency, highest-capacity subsea cable ever deployed between the United States and Europe through a diverse route, further south than other subsea cables in the North Atlantic. This, along with a continued expansion of significant new cables that may land in the North of Spain, potentially to be added to Derio, points in the directions of a new whole range of opportunities for very high capacity end-to-end services.

Derio is a carrier neutral state-of-the-art purpose-built infrastructure designed with an open architecture to ensure that every carrier, hyperscaler, cloud and content provider can benefit from the advanced services in Telxius commercial offering. Additionally, it is certified as a 100% renewable energy building with free cooling. As such, it will meet the latest environmental standards, furthering Telxius’ initiatives to increase sustainable practices across all our operations. For these reasons the Derio Communications Hub is uniquely positioned to create new opportunities for organizations looking to connect the U.S. to Europe and beyond.

Q. What plans are underway for backhaul connections from Derio?

Colocating in Derio opens up a world of interconnection opportunities with the US via MAREA and with the main European hubs. To fully maximize Derio’s reach, we are finalizing two direct backhaul connections straight to Paris and to Madrid, leveraging the existing Telxius infrastructure and adding to the benefits of the MAREA subsea route between Europe and the US. 

These new backhaul connections contribute to reinforce Telxius’ European reach, extending MAREA’s capabilities to two key hubs like Madrid and Paris.

Q. Could you please update us on your agreement with Orange on the Dunant cable?

Telxius has teamed up with Orange on the development of terrestrial backhaul extensions in the US and Europe for the Dunant cable, a Google project. Both Orange and Telxius will offer co-location services at their respective strategically located Cable Landing Stations in Saint-Hilaire-de-Riez and Virginia Beach. Telxius will connect Orange to Ashburn from Virginia Beach, while Orange will enable terrestrial connection from its Saint- Hilaire-de-Riez CLS to Telxius up to Paris. These connections combined with our new Paris – Derio backhaul allow Telxius to effectively provide customers with very high capacity end-to-end services, as well as network redundancy, on the strategic US-Europe transatlantic route.

Furthermore, it confirms our commitment to provide the best services to our partners and customers, offering the latest technology, diverse routes and best latency to address the needs of content-providers, global enterprises and third-party operators.

Q. What are the strategic priorities for Telxius as we look ahead to 2021?

At Telxius, we remain focused on enabling global communications for organizations via one of the world’s largest Tier 1 IP networks, powered by one of the most extensive high capacity fiber optic subsea cable networks.  As a result of increased infrastructure developments, new connectivity options and new partnerships, the Telxius network successfully links the US, Latin America, Europe and beyond.  Our new Communications Hub in Derio, with its strategic location near the MAREA CLS, makes this site the new gateway to Europe. MAREA and BRUSA are the lowest latency and highest capacity cables globally, providing direct access to the world’s most relevant data centers including the Ashburn area in the US.

By 2021, Telxius will operate 100,000 km of fiber optic cables. We will continue to expand our network on Dunant, bringing diversity and resiliency to our transatlantic route, and we also have a joint project with América Móvil to build a new cable in the Pacific from Guatemala to Chile.

In all, Telxius now has subsea cable assets in 21 countries and 52 cities worldwide, with 20 Tbps of IP Capacity at peak time, 88 PoPs, 19 fully owned landing stations, and 2 -redundant NOCs with the newest technology.

As the world’s needs for uninterrupted global interconnectivity continue to rise, at Telxius we are preparing the road ahead.  Our unrivaled global ecosystem of network infrastructure and state-of-the-art facilities continues to grow to meet our customers’ needs and the organizations that count on us to ensure their businesses thrive in even some of the most challenging environments.

For more information on Telxius and our latest projects, please visit our website.  You can also learn more by followingTelxius on LinkedIn and connecting with Rafaelhere.

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