We don’t just run data centres, we build ecosystems

15 December 2017 | Natalie Bannerman


Sachin Sony, senior manager of field development & vertical marketing at Equinix, talks about the company’s strategic cloud road-map, its partnership with Oracle and the future of the industry.

Sachin Sony Equinix NEW 280 x 420According to Sachin Sony, senior manager of field development & vertical marketing at Equinix: “What separates us from other data centres is that we help build ecosystems. We get the enterprises to come in and connect into the various environments, which could be the cloud or network and we are able build a type of private Internet connection for them.”

On the back of the recent news that Equinix is deploying Oracle Cloud infrastructure into 16 of its markets, Capacity spoke with Sony to find out what this announcement means for the company and what’s on the horizon for Equinix as far as cloud innovation.

Sony says that today Equinix has around 240,000 cross connects, 1,500 enterprises worldwide using its cloud services, of which about 210 are fortune 500 companies. In addition it has approximately 2750 cloud and IT providers and 1600 network providers.

So how did the decision to roll out of Oracle’s infrastructure come about? “Oracle had a prior relationship with us,” explains Sony. “I think in 2015 we had deployed Oracle in about 6 locations and Oracle was fast becoming one of the most sought after services on the Cloudexchange. So given the fact that Oracle has a fairly robust, fast platform and fairly comprehensive integrated services unlike the other hyperscalers plus the fact that many enterprises within Equinix have legacy oracle infrastructure, the natural progression for many of them was to start using some of their cloud services as well.”

Additionally he says that it was a “win-win” for both players as Oracle were also looking to expand its own footprint across North America something that Equinix was able to facilitate through its locations.

But will Oracle services eventually be deployed to all Equinix data centres? Well, that’s something that Sony says they are in talks about but he made it clear that it’s something that is going to be “progressive in nature”.

Cloudscene recently named Equinix as number one across all three regions in its quarterly data centre leaderboard, a position it’s held for three consecutive quarters.

Capacity asks Sony how Equinix has managed to retain its top spot and how partnerships like the kind with Oracle has influenced this; “I think one of the key requirements is understanding that enterprises are migrating towards the cloud, especially with the adoption of technology like IoT, the emergence of edge computing. The big data produced as a consequence of that needs to be processed at the edge as close to user as possible.”

“The fact that Equinix has such a wide spread geographical footprint across all the major continents, enables us to do just that. We enable enterprises to move away from what was previously a centralized architecture to a very distributed architecture, taking applications right to the edge.”

Sony also adds how featuring some of the biggest names in cloud computing also adds value to Equinix’s offering saying: “Having cloud providers like Oracle, Microsoft and Amazon right at the edge brings an additional value because not only can enterprises bring processing of the data to the edge, they can use cost effective storage etc. That in turn helps solve challenges around performance and latency, security, scalability all of which are key barriers to the adoption of cloud services.”

But what about security? As a growing area of concern for most enterprises transitioning to the cloud. Sony says Equinix is not only aware but fully prepared for it. “Having a private Internet connection not on the public internet is far more secure and provides an extra layer of protection against denial of service attacks and malicious attacks that tend to happen on the public internet.”

In addition Equinix also offers a virtual port that includes encryption of data which ensures an added layer of security as well.

Sony’s plans for the cloud division of the business is to continue to grow it at the rate its currently moving and expand its cloud services saying: “We are growing organically and will continue to grow the number of enterprises adding providers we did not have into our ecosystems. In particular we want to attract mid-tier Cloud and IT providers to give enterprises more options, especially with the incoming GDPR legislation.”

As our interview draws to a close the Sony mentions Equinix recent Global Interconnection Index a report that tracks, measures and forecasts the growth of interconnection bandwidth. According to the index growth around private traffic is going to be far higher than the public Internet by 2020 effectively out growing the Internet. Sony says that this will be driven by the need for better security and the increase in data from the adoption of IoT. Regardless of what’s driving this future shift to an alternative Internet, one thing is for sure, as a provider of private internet connections, it’s very good news for Equinix.