EDITOR ’ S QUESTION
RUSSELL POOLE , MANAGING DIRECTOR UK , EQUINIX
usiness Digital Transformation is
B advancing at significant pace across Europe , the Middle East and Africa ( EMEA ) which is attributed to a growth in enterprises taking advantage of the availability of digital infrastructure service providers . This symbiotic relationship has created a snowball effect with almost half ( 47 %) of EMEA ’ s IT professionals now migrating critical applications to cloud service providers to gain a greater competitive advantage .
In addition , the past two years has seen the pandemic force many companies to digitise their business models which has intensified the demand for flexible digital services . And while COVID-19 continues to spread , there is hope at least in some parts of the world that the vaccine will begin to slow infection rates . Companies in the UK and Europe are already making preparations for a period of slow but purposeful recovery . These economies are going into digital overdrive , with enterprises implementing the expansion and deployment of digital infrastructure at a rate four times faster than prepandemic levels .
Equinix ’ s annual Global Interconnection Index forecasts that Frankfurt , London , Amsterdam and Paris metros will make up the largest in overall EMEA interconnection bandwidth capacity by 2024 , with 75 % of the regional mix . London is predicted to be the epicentre of data centre development as British tech firms in sectors such as FinTech , e-commerce and digital health continue to grow at an exponential rate . The city is expected to grow at a 45 % compound annual growth rate ( CAGR ) year-on-year , contributing 1,735 Tbps by 2024 . This bandwidth is almost three times higher than Paris , more than twice the Tbps of Amsterdam and double that of Frankfurt .
This further cements London ’ s position as a strategic interconnection hub for digital businesses looking to compete on a global scale , despite the UK ’ s departure from the European Union and the disruption brought about by the pandemic . The city continues to lead EMEA for industries reliant on interconnection , for example cloud and IT services , banking and insurance , and securities and trading . As such , it will need to be the focus of continuing data centre development to accommodate the predicted surge in interconnection bandwidth requirement .
UK industries , many of which have been hit hard by COVID-19 , have embraced a digital-first strategy to develop new business revenue models to aid their post-pandemic revival . They see this as an essential pathway to achieve the level of agility and resiliency that is required to outpace and out-innovate their competitors . And as the UK reinvents itself as a vibrant tech nation post-Brexit , it will be championing emerging verticals , such as AI and cybersecurity , which will see demand for interconnectivity increase still more .
LONDON IS PREDICTED TO BE THE EPICENTRE OF DATA CENTRE DEVELOPMENT AS BRITISH TECH FIRMS IN SECTORS SUCH AS FINTECH , E-COMMERCE AND DIGITAL HEALTH CONTINUE TO GROW .
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