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Equinix launches data centre in Melbourne, up and coming smart city

A new Equinix data centre has opened in Melbourne Australia, a city that is quickly becoming known as a leading smart city.

This is Equinix’s fourth International Business ExchangeTM (IBX) data centre in Melbourne. Known as ME2, the new facility supports the growing demand for digital transformation globally, as well as Melbourne’s smart city development and the interconnection needs of local customers, including The Salvation Army, the company states.

Digital innovation is transforming the ability of today’s businesses to extend market reach, respond flexibly to new customer requirements and deploy the controls needed for security and compliance, Equinix states.

The complexity behind the evolving digital economy requires businesses to extend network infrastructure to the edge to be in close proximity to their customers and partners for secure data exchange and seamless digital experiences.

This added data centre and interconnection capacity in Melbourne will help with those initiatives and smart city evolution. Melbourne was recently recognised as the world’s sixth most advanced smart city, according to a recent report from Oracle and ESI ThoughtLab.

The ME2 IBX is located in Melbourne’s Fishermans Bend region, Australia’s largest urban renewal project, which is forecast to be home to approximately 80,000 residents and provide employment for up to 80,000 people by 2050. Companies operating at the ME2 IBX can leverage the ecosystem of approximately 10,000 businesses currently operating on Platform Equinix globally.

The facility is expected to play a key role in supporting Melbournes smart city development, the company states.

The ME2 IBX is a US$77.5 million (approximately A$116 million) facility that includes more than 29,300 square feet (2,730 square meters) of colocation space. Once fully built out, the facility will include more than 88,000 square feet (8,190 square meters) of colocation space.

The facility offers a wide range of interconnection options, including Equinix Cloud Exchange Fabric (ECX Fabric), an on-demand, SDN-enabled interconnection service that allows businesses to connect between its own distributed infrastructure and any other company’s distributed infrastructure.

ECX Fabric provides access to a range of cloud service providers in Australia including Alibaba, AWS, Google Cloud, Microsoft Azure, SAP Cloud, Oracle, SoftLayer as well as many local providers, plus access to major network service providers including Telstra, Optus and Vocus, Equinix states.

Located adjacent to the ME1 IBX with a secure pedestrian footbridge between the buildings, the ME2 IBX will benefit customers expanding from ME1 to ME2 with a single security ingress point, Equinix states.

The proximity of ME2 to ME1 allows for expansion of services for existing Equinix ME1 customers and partners. The ME2 IBX also benefits from Equinix Metro Connect connectivity to the ME4 IBX in Derrimut, which is about 19 kilometers away, providing customers with the ability to support geographical diversity and redundancy as needed to support full business continuity within the state of Victoria.

As the only location in Victoria with direct access to Victoria Internet Exchange and the Australia Singapore Cable (ASC), Equinix’s Melbourne campus offers connectivity to more than 50 network service providers.

The city of Melbourne is increasingly experiencing digital transformation and is predicted to have a digital economy worth approximately A$51billion (US$36 billion) in 2020, according to the company. Equinix’s Melbourne data centre campus enables companies to digitise their businesses by embracing cloud applications from more than 80 Cloud and IT service providers.

As part of its multi-cloud strategy, The Salvation Army moved its key infrastructure to Equinix in Melbourne, while shifting critical business applications across workplace productivity, human resources and more to Software-as-a-Service.

Capitalising on the economy, Equinix continues to expand its national footprint to meet the rising demand for interconnection.

In 2019, Equinix launched its eighth Sydney data centre, SY5, and completed expansion of its second Perth facility, PE2. With today’s opening of ME2, Equinix has a national footprint of 17 data centres across Melbourne, Sydney, Perth, Canberra, Adelaide and Brisbane, with four in Melbourne.

Since entering Melbourne in 2015, Equinix has built an ecosystem with more than 220 customers across multiple industries. The network effect of this growth creates increased need for further data centre capacity to support businesses increasing migration towards the digital edge.

Equinix president Asia-Pacific Jeremy Deutsch says, “The value of smart cities has become increasingly recognised and is now a key priority for markets across the Asia-Pacific region as they continue to grow their digital economies.

“Equinix is dedicated to support this development by connecting people, businesses and industry so they can better interconnect at the digital edge. Our investment in the Australian market reflects our commitment to our customers as they continue their digital transformation journeys.”

Equinix Australia managing director Guy Danskine says, “Five years ago, we entered the Melbourne market with our ME1 facility. In that short time, we now have four sites in two distinct campus locations across the city, containing a flourishing ecosystem that enables secure, high-speed, low-latency connections for our customers and partners.

“This new IBX demonstrates our continued commitment to the Victorian and Australian digital economies, creating a place where our customers and partners can interconnect across our national footprint of 17 highly connected data centres.”

IDC Asia/Pacific associate research director, telecommunications, Nikhil Batra says, “Melbourne has a long-term vision as a smart city to adopt useful innovations that fold seamlessly into how we live, work and play.

“Equinix’s investment in the city, which started with ME1 a few years ago, is now continuing with the opening of ME2, driven by the growing interconnection requirements of a flourishing smart city.

“Melbourne is leading the enterprise transformation charge in Australia, where organisations are focusing on customer experience transformation, and business process optimisation in order to build the digital enterprise of the future.”