The digital transformation catalyst is one of interconnection
Johannesburg, South Africa
The digital transformation catalyst according to Michele McCann, Head Interconnection & Peering at Teraco, is one of interconnection. Speaking at a recent Cloud conference, McCann said that while there are myriad trends driving digital transformation, a strategy without connectivity – an actual physical network link – will result in slower digital transformation adoption.
“Often coined as the vital link of digital transformation, we encourage clients to consider interconnection as the most critical step before looking to engage in any type of digital transformation strategy,” says McCann.
To do this, she says that a simple infrastructure checklist will assist and guide clients in the right direction: “Consider critical elements such as these before embarking on a digital transformation strategy: latency, security, network cost savings, access to cloud providers, improved resilience, cloud-ready network architecture and the need for rapid deployment of digital strategies.”
All of the above, says McCann forms part of Platform Teraco. She says that, it is the ecosystems that exist within them that matters most: “The interconnection ecosystem is central to the offering. Enterprises require the ability to interconnect securely to a wide variety of service providers, partners, cloud and content operators, all of which reside within an ecosystem. It’s through these that we have seen local cloud connections growing daily, thus further boosting and building the strength of our local cloud.”
Another rising trend and benefit, according to McCann, is that of direct interconnectivity within a neutral colocation facility “It is here where you may see Enterprise to Enterprise interconnectivity occurring, a bank connecting directly to a retailer, for example. This diversity offers both further control and additional cost saving, while changing the digital landscape for both immeasurably.”
She also credits Africa’s cable infrastructure investment and enablement: “Simply put, without the expansive cable system, Africa would not benefit from any cloud or content investment. I am excited about the realities of both the Equiano and 2Africa cables, both of which will increased connectivity 20-fold. The latter, which is a Facebook initiative, will have 21 landings in 16 African countries making it more possible for the industry at large to deliver increasing amounts of content and the cloud directly to end users.”
Teraco currently operates 19000 interconnects, which is growing at an average of 300 per month. We have seen a 48% growth in 2020 on cloud connections and foresee this number doubling in 2021 with more large cloud operators investing in South Africa.