Vocus unveils plans to turn Australia into Asia/US transit hub

14 June 2017 | James Pearce


Australian operator Vocus Communications has laid out plans for the Australia-Singapore Cable (ASC) project it bought when it acquired Nextgen Networks.

Vocus, subject to a AUD$3.3 billion takeover bid from private investors KKR, said it will use ASC alongside terrestrial links across Australia to become a player in the transit market between the US and Asia, according to report.

ITNews quoted commercial director John Allerton as highlighting the advantages of running traffic through Australia over traditional Asian hubs.

There are significant geological challenges … what we refer to as the northern route between SE Asia and US west coast … where other cable systems run,” Allerton said.

“That’s obviously earthquakes, tsunamis and all those ugly things that tend to happen in that region. But in addition is obviously geopolitical challenges - [many cables] go through the South China Sea, as an example.

“We believe there’s real opportunity for us to attract IP transit traffic from South East Asia and potentially further north, obviously dependent on the latency requirements of particular traffic types.”

The 4,600km ASC was originally launched as an alternative to SEA-ME-WE-3. It will be a 40Tbps network, constructed by Alcatel Submarine Networks, linking Perth to Singapore and Indonesia.

The potential route identified by Vocus would potentially run between Singapore, Perth, through Sydney and on to LA, using capacity leased on the Southern Cross cable.