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Neutral Networks spends $11m on Mexico-US network, NEXT

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Neutral Networks has begun operations on phase one of its transnational, underground and completely neutral fibre optic network, NEXT.

Once fully completed, the neutral network will connect the City of Laredo in the US with the City of Monterrey in Mexico and marks the company's first border-crossing network.

According to Gabriel Navarro, CEO and Leonardo Antopia, CCO of Neutral Networks, NEXT will be divided into three major phases: the first one connects Laredo with Monterrey and is currently completely operational. The second will follow the route from Monterrey to Queretaro and the third, from Queretaro to Mexico City.

The first phase of development saw an initial investment of US$11 million and was financed by Southern Cross Group, shareholder of the company.

“Neutral Networks' goal is for Mexico to have a modern, world-class infrastructure with the latest technology. Major foreign investments have been announced in the country in recent months, particularly for the data centre industry in Monterrey and Queretaro," said Navarro.

"The data transmission demand that these investments will represent in the short term is very big. With this network we are doing our part to contribute to further revolutionize the industry and keep the country attractive to foreign investment.”

One of the drivers behind the decision to connect the capital of Mexico with Laredo in the US is because the Texan city represents a connection point for most international clients, which make Laredo a key access point into all the networks concentrated there.

This in turn make Monterrey a key industrial city in Mexico and the most natural connection point from Laredo.

“The use of neutral networks maximises the operators' investment by reducing entry barriers into the country and its time to market," said Antopia.

"With our network, a company with the intention of settling in Mexico can start operating within 24 hours. This allows the arrival of more players, while increasing competition, which ends up benefiting final consumers."

This first phase of NEXT consists of +185 miles of underground fibre and was built through a fibre optic pipeline system that runs under the Rio Grande river.

Over the coming months, Neutral Networks will start construction on the next two phases of the project, with an additional estimated investment of $47 million. This will complete the +800 miles of the underground fibre optic network.