A look back at 2021

While the earliest stages of 2021 naturally followed in the footsteps of the year prior (one which we’d all like to forget!), things did turn for the better, and we have enjoyed a return to normality for the most part, both in work and at home.

This year has again been one of major development for us here at Netwise. London East has turned from a basic envelope with free-standing equipment to an energised data centre, which has been a wonderful thing to see take shape. We’re now very close to welcoming in our first client deployments at the new site.

Heavy investment in our future has naturally continued this year, with London East taking centre stage in that regard. Development of the new site continued on from last year, and has been underway at considerable pace for the entire 12 month period.

NLE has of course sat front and centre of our development programme, however we do have a large and ever-growing operational data centre business spanning four other locations, which means we’ve had a busy year aside to the build project.

Notable projects from 2021 include:

  • We neared completion on London East – our brand new data centre is almost ready to throw open its doors to new and existing clients. Phase one completion is now expected in January, following a design and build process which has spanned the length of the global pandemic so far, starting back in April 2020.
  • Ralph Wall joined as Sales Manager – Ralph joined as our new Sales Manager at the start of the year, assisting with the development of our sales process.
  • We rolled out a major network upgrade – in a staged upgrade action which spanned several months, we upgraded our core routing fabric in all core locations to support ongoing growth.
  • We announced our enhanced partnership with Zayo – in May, we were able to officially announce our new relationship with Zayo, as they bring their services into NLE to support our network, and to establish their own point of presence in the new facility.
  • Our POP in Telehouse expanded into North 2 – driven by client projects, we have now expanded our presence on the Telehouse Docklands campus, with the extension of services into the North 2 building. This hangs off the side of our Supernode in the original North building, and adds three further footprints to our estate there.

We always knew that 2021 would be a springboard year for us as we moved beyond the difficulties of 2020. We posted solid growth last year – which we hope remains as the toughest in recent memory – and as such had high confidence in accelerated growth in 2021. This certainly did come to fruition, as we posted by far our most impressive financials to date, which have further solidified the rock-solid stability we provide for our loyal customers.

Our clients continue to rely on our services around the clock, more now than ever before, so our continued growth and development ensures that we remain able to provide the world-class data centre services that we’ve become so well known for, onwardly enabling rapid client-side growth as the economy recovers further still.

In December, Netwise turned 12 years old, having incorporated back in 2009. We can’t quite believe that we celebrated our tenth anniversary two whole years ago. The next milestone anniversary will be our 15th, which is now just three years away – we can’t wait to see where we stand by then!

It’s fair to say that we had very humble beginnings, as illustrated by our first ever set of servers. This photo actually dates back to around 2005, which is when the first ideas that would later evolve into the first iteration of Netwise began to gestate.

Here’s a small gallery showing a few highlights along our journey so far.

To have moved from a set of old IBM tower servers to where we are today is something we’re very proud of. London East is our third private design and build project in our 12 year history, and our metro network now spans six buildings in five locations across London. Beyond our on-net capabilities, we now look after client deployments in 15 facilities, which span seven countries around the world.

On the opening of London East, we’ll have two active private data centres, providing us with 430 client enclosures. This can be expanded to 520 enclosures via a possible expansion route at London Central, and we have scope for taking this up to over 1,000+ total enclosures long-term, with possible plans for campus development at London East.


Looking ahead

With so much already in the pipeline for 2022, it’s safe to say that we’re all very excited for the year to come.

Taking NLE up to full speed is naturally the number one priority, aside to our usual headstrong mission of providing our clients with truly exceptional data centre services in our live locations.

Much like our active private facility, Netwise London Central, our newest data centre is again powered by renewable energy, and makes use of world-leading technology to ensure it maintains one of the lowest capacity PUE figures in the country (NLC: 1.12, NLE: 1.05). As organisations now begin moving towards their net-zero targets more aggressively, we’re proud to sit at the very forefront of the green infrastructure chain, ensuring our clients can scale up their mission-critical technology without fear of inflated carbon impact.

With large organisations in the UK now being tasked with publishing their net-zero transition plans by 2023, we’re expecting a surge in uptake at London East in the next 24 months, which is perfectly positioned to cater for highly efficient, renewably energised deployments at scale.

We’re also hopeful for seeing the continued return to normality for everyone, which does seem to have hit another slight stumbling block this month, what with the reintroduction of controls in response to the Omicron variant. Our general COVID response is still in place across our private data centres, and we will continue to adapt this as necessary.

We’d like to wish all of our stakeholders a fantastic New Year, and a prosperous 2022. We look forward to sharing it with you.

Netwise brings Zayo into brand new London East data centre

Netwise, London’s leading independent data centre operator, has today announced that international fibre infrastructure provider, Zayo Group, will be the first major Tier 1 carrier to officially connect into their new London East data centre (NLE), which is set for launch in mid-2021.

Netwise / Zayo

Zayo will provide diverse dark fibre routes into the new location, providing connections back to Netwise’s existing core nodes in Telehouse North and Equinix LD8.

With its central location in the East London data centre ecosystem, NLE will join the existing suite of major Telehouse and Global Switch campuses in the area, creating the best-connected data centre hotspot in the UK.

The new facility will extend capacity and diversity for Netwise, adding 13,000ft2 to their private data centre portfolio, joining the 11,000ft2 London Central site which opened in Bermondsey in 2016.

As well as providing customers with access to turnkey colocation and connectivity services, available across the Netwise data centre estate, clients will also have the option to lease dark fibre routes, allowing for the deployment of high capacity interconnection services for demanding applications. This will benefit Tier 2 carriers and managed service providers that need to interconnect active sites at over 100Gbps. The new connectivity service will be provided in addition to existing Layer 1, Layer 2 and blended transit services available at all on-net Netwise locations.

Netwise London East represents a new era of efficient, green data centre technology in the region, with a PUE design figure of just 1.05. This is an exceptionally low PUE for a colocation facility – particularly in London – delivered through the innovative application of latest-generation evaporative cooling systems. Similar to the existing London Central facility, the new site will be powered by 100% renewable energy sources.

“We’ve used Zayo to deliver high capacity links elsewhere on our network for quite some time, so this is a natural evolution of our growing relationship. The diverse route options provided by Zayo will enable the resilient interconnection of our new London East data centre with the rest of our core network,” said Matt Seaton, Senior Manager at Netwise. “We’re excited to see the positive impacts of this efficient, world-class facility benefit UK clients and beyond.”

“The newest collaboration with Netwise will enable Zayo to meet the growing demands for connectivity solutions in a major European hub,” said Yannick Leboyer, Chief Operating Officer, Europe at Zayo. “Our unique, low latency fibre network will provide high quality connections for service providers in the UK and across Europe.”

Hard hat tours of the new facility have now begun and can be requested by contacting enquiries@netwise.co.uk. The date of the official launch event is currently pending in consideration of pandemic restrictions, but is expected to happen in July 2021.

A look back at 2020

What a difficult year 2020 has been for everyone around the world.

While this year will certainly stand as one to forget for many, we’re going to remember 2020 for a long time, as a year of extremely exciting developments here at Netwise.

A look back at 2020

This has been our largest year of investment to date, having broken ground on our brand new London East data centre back in April. Unsurprisingly, this is by far our biggest single project to date, and will provide the capacity we need to continue with our upward growth projections as we head into the new decade.

While NLE has taken centre stage this year in terms of investment and development, it’s been a busy year aside to this, across a wide range of key areas.

Notable projects from 2020 include:

  • We started work on London East – we started work on our brand new London East data centre in April. We’ve been running our Build Blog ever since then – needless to say, we’re very excited about what 2021 will have in store for us and our new site.
  • Graham Cornell joined as Technical Manager – Graham joined as our new Technical Manager in January, and has been hard at work helping our growing roster of clients ever since.
  • THN became our first Supernode – in March, we upgraded our core node in Telehouse North, becoming the first on-net site to enjoy the roll out of our full Supernode architecture.
  • We added CLL to our POP list – the summertime saw the roll out of a brand new on-net POP / node at City Lifeline, one of London’s most important carrier-dense facilities – we took a pod of racks here, to secure our future in this location.
  • We took delivery of our first fleet vehicle – our first fleet vehicle joined us this year – number 001 – which has since received our full livery and chevron kit. This will be joined by further vehicles in due course, and makes the ongoing operation and maintenance of our multiple facilities much easier (along with client migrations).
  • We expanded into FRA and AMS – we’ve expanded our presence in Frankfurt, and have entered the Amsterdam market for the first time, all driven by client growth in these key European locations.
  • Our first private cage went live – we deployed our first private client cage at our London Central site in Q1, allowing one of our key clients to enjoy an entirely private space in Data Hall 1, complete with their own access control and build desk.
  • COVID-19 safe operations – in line with changing government guidelines throughout the year, we’ve always ensured fully-compliant operation of our sites, both in terms of our own team, and visiting clients.

Beyond the roster of notable projects above, we’ve also performed extremely well in our 19-20 financial year, which came to an end in October. Despite global economic issues resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re fortunate to operate in a sector which has seen accelerated growth and demand as organisations move to remote working.

We hope that our continued growth in what has been a very turbulent year provides the stability our customers need to operate with total peace of mind, thanks to the faultless operations of critical business systems around the clock.

We helped many new and existing customers pivot to fully-remote working environments back in April, which we’ve continued to do throughout the year.

Our growth this year has been testament to our rock-solid operation, which our clients continue to rely on for their critical IT infrastructure. We’ve been extremely proud to see so many of our clients continue to grow this year, providing world-class services to millions of end-users all around the world.


Looking ahead

We’re looking forward to 2021 just as much as everyone else, not least as we expect to return to a more normal home life, but also as we see the fruits of our labour this year come into full service.

In early 2021, we’ll be adding to our team, which we’re very excited to share with everyone in January.

A reminder of our exciting 10th birthday, which we celebrated at the end of 2019

We’d like to wish all of our stakeholders a fantastic New Year, and a prosperous 2021. We look forward to sharing it with you.

6 tips for choosing a London colocation provider for your business

In the modern world of business, technology is king. The vast majority of core business functions rely on implicitly on critical technology. This is especially true when one considers the housing of business-sensitive data. With modern technological advances, it’s now easier than ever for businesses to house their data in many different ways.

Colocation services, which combine space, equipment, and security measures for your data into one packaged service, are particularly popular. If you’re in the market for London colocation services, you’re in the right place. In this article, we’ll give you seven tips to guide your buying process as you decide on a colocation centre for your business data.


1. Power is king

When it comes to colocation services, it’s true to say that power is king. The amount of power and how it is delivered should be an essential guiding factor in your decision-making process. If you do a poor job of estimating how much power your business will need, both now and in the future, there’s a good chance that you could end up choosing a colocation centre that simply won’t be able to meet your eventual requirements.

To avoid any hiccups here, make sure you do your due diligence before issuing an RFP. Figure out exactly what your power requirements are, not only right now, but also during peak times and as you expand. Some facilities allow you to purchase power as you go (metered power), while others will require you to purchase a certain threshold of power regardless of how much you really use. One option may be cheaper than the other for you, depending on your power requirements.


2. Think long-term scalability

When deciding on a London colocation centre, don’t just decide on a facility that fits your needs right now. Instead, remember that you want to work with an operator that will scale alongside your business. 

Many colocation contracts are for a minimum of one to three years. So ask yourself where your business will be several years from now. If you plan on introducing new technologies, changing how you store data, or make any other significant changes that will affect your power requirements, be sure to factor that into your decision-making process.

You should have a good idea of whether or not your operator of choice will meet your needs now and in the future. Skip this step, and you could easily find yourself trying to break or renegotiate a contract a couple of years down the road.


3. Check uptime reports

One of the most important considerations when a purchasing colocation service is uptime. After all, every minute your network is unavailable will likely cost your business money. Your employees are unable to work, rendering them completely unproductive. But worse yet, if your clients are on the same network, then the disruption to their service will certainly have untold consequences on your ability to retain their business when their contracts come to renewal.

Make sure you never sacrifice anything when choosing a colocation centre, including a poor uptime record. Instead, you want to choose the most reliable option available to you. The facility should have round-the-clock support services, so even if your systems go down overnight, there’s an expert who can help you troubleshoot and fix the issue. This is not the place to skimp on costs.


4. Assess security protocols

Rapid advances in technology have come with an unfortunate consequence: a sudden proliferation in cybercrime. It could be a hacker trying to redirect funds from business operations to a personal accounts. Or, it could be one of your competitors trying to steal proprietary technology. Either way, it’s bad for your business.

That’s why you need to ensure that the operator offers premium-level security. Again, this is not somewhere you want to skimp on costs. A data breach could compromise your entire network, not to mention client data. Remember that physical security should also be a consideration. The data centre should have stringent measures in place that prevent those with ulterior motives from accessing your equipment.


5. Check audit compliance

Few things can be as significant in setting back a company as finding yourself on the wrong side of an audit. With all of the different certifications and regulations in this industry, there are now several different audits that your organisation probably has to face every year.

Make sure that your colocation centre of choice meets any certification requirements and will cooperate with any company or third-party audits.


6. Look at total pricing

Last but not least, make sure that you’re looking at total pricing before you sign on the dotted line. Many cheap colocation centres will ‘nickel and dime’ you for things like additional cable routing and remote hands, so be sure that you’re well aware of all the fees for any service upgrades you may require. 


Choose the right London colocation centre for your business needs

There you have it — now you know how to choose a colocation centre for your business. Be sure to check out our London colocation facilities if you’re looking for reliable, secure, high-value services.

Supernode core network upgrade

Just as quickly as the new year begins, investment continues in earnest as we roll out our brand new Supernode core network architecture, enabling enhanced 100Gbps+ capabilities across our metro network.

Our core node in Telehouse received the steroid treatment mid-March, upgrading to a much larger ASR chassis, providing further interconnection capacity as we maintain the steep upward growth trajectory of our network. Telehouse now functions as our first on-net Supernode, handling masses of fibre connections that mix in and out of our multi-site network.

You can take a look at a compressed time-lapse of the upgrade work being undertaken here:

Beyond the full node rework in Telehouse, all on-net nodes have received line card upgrades that enable the enhanced operational capabilities we require as we head steadfast into 2020.

Looking further ahead, we’re also adding a brand new core POP to our metro network in Q2 2020, which will be officially announced in a few weeks. This will further increase our on-net capabilities as we gear up for what will be the largest evolution in our service offering since launching the London Central data centre in 2016 – more on that very soon!