Q&A with Gonzalo Pansard, CEO, Axent

Q&A with Gonzalo Pansard, CEO, Axent

28 October 2019 | Sponsored Content


Capacity speaks to Gonzalo Pansard, CEO of Spanish wholesale operator, Axent about the company's offerings in the region and future projects.

What new international projects are reaching Spain as a crossroads between Africa, Americas and Europe?

We strongly believe that the position of Spain (or better said, the Iberian Peninsula) is privileged as a growing hub of international traffic, regarding the projects of subsea cable deployments as MAREA, the new OTTs regional implementation and some new data centres construction, as Interxion MAD3.

So, the strategy of Axent, as an infrastructure provider and capacity operator, due to its high quality gas grid fibre, its backbone national capabilities and the flexibility of its network, is to serve these needs.

Why is Spain so uniquely positioned as neutral node and data centres grow?

Some known factors as the geographical location between Africa and the north of Europe, the very important relationship with South America or the presence of an extended high quality infrastructure are boosting this regional interest for the international telco sector.

As a complement, a very dynamic sector of local carriers operates in Spain and deliver new retail services to areas that are less covered. Therefore, a growing demand of new traffic interconnection nodes and infrastructure of connectivity is shaping the country.

What kind of specific solutions do you provide in terms of connectivity and infrastructure?

Axent is the fortunate combination of the proven capabilities of its shareholders: Enagás and Axión.

Enagás, the Spanish national gas TSO, and its fibre network of 6.000km has been ceded to Axent for the creation of a new wholesale operator. This national gas backbone footprint is being developed by Axent to reach the high traffic end points and telco nodes

Axión is a Spanish towerco (close to 650 towers) and wireless networks operator (broadcast, small cells, critical communications private networks, IoT solutions) and has ceded its fixed network services by radio links to Axent.

The Axent knowledge of the telco sector with the final access radiolinks platform joined with the fibre platform provides agile and creative solutions for the capacity circuit needs. Also, Axent is providing neutral infrastructure of dark fibre.

Can you explain about the quality and flexibility of backbone fibre networks coming from gas grid utilities?

The main trait of the backbone gas networks are its security and its critical infrastructure type quality: safely buried, high standards of control and maintenance and accessibility at any point for new manholes.

 5G is now a reality, can you go into some of the fibre requirements for both tower and edge computing?

Effectively, the deployment of 5G networks will enhance the number of tower cells and increase the need of traffic transportation. The low latency will require the local presence of the computation capabilities. Therefore, there is no 5G without fibre reaching the sites and delivering the edge computing to the covered areas.

That is why we are focusing the fibre-to-the-tower and the fibre-to-the-node new fibre segments strategy, investing in the backhaul network and accompanying the MNOs deployment needs.