Proximity links NW England edge data center with Zayo, enables connectivity to Ireland, USA

Proximity links NW England edge data center with Zayo, enables connectivity to Ireland, USA

Fibre network operator Zayo is to establish a POP (a point of presence) in the Chester data center of UK regional data center provider Proximity Data Centres Limited. Rapidly linking a small but growing number of data centers around the UK is an important piece of Proximity’s vision for becoming a significant player in the UK market.

Proximity is an edge data center specialist, and, at least for now, the only one of its kind in the UK. The has been building facilities since 2020, particularly in the North West of the country. Executives said the company will have eighteen sites built within the next year and a half. Many of these will be in locations where connectivity and fiber networks are not so plentiful as in areas such as metropolitan London, and it’s therefore critical for Proximity to bring providers like Zayo on board.

Zayo runs a reasonably sized fiber network in the UK through its 2014 acquisition of Geo. The new Zayo network point of presence at Proximity Edge 4 will offer low latency circuits to data center hubs in Dublin, Ireland, and the USA, allowing increased resilience for customers requiring multiple connections to cloud services. Zayo is expected to complete the connection within the next three months.

Proximity’s data center locations, UK

Proximity’s data center locations, UK (Source: Proximity Data Centres Ltd.)

The news follows a similar announcement earlier this year where Proximity teamed up with another fiber provider, ITS, and Liverpool City Council to build a 212km local fiber network hooked up to Proxmity’s data centers in the region.

Analysis

Proximity’s play is to take on data centers owned by large corporates and/or systems integrators, now empty or less full as their owners shift workloads to the cloud. This means power and connectivity are in situ already, and quite often the original owner or tenant remains as a customer. As edge data centers go, the sites are quite large, typically offering between 2MW and 8MW of available power. The aim is to build a network of sites that will have 95% of the UK population within a 15-mile radius. That’s quite an ambitious plan and if it comes to fruition would make Proximity one of the UK’s largest colocation providers within the next few years.

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