Open Hub Med: a truly neutral and open Hub for the Internet Traffic Exchange opens in Sicily, Italy
The project aims to make Italy the main Submarine cable hub for the Mediterranean Basin and will be operational within Q4 2015. Interoute, Mandarin, MIX and TelecityGroup Italia, the main promoters of the Open Hub Med (OHM) project, have chosen Italtel’s Carini site as the location where the second Italian Telecommunication Pole, after Milan’s, will be developed
This new TLC business hot spot will be operational within Q4 of 2015 and the project will see a second expansion phase with the opening of a node in Bari, on the east coast of southern Italy, within 2016. This ambitious technological project – merging an open and neutral site with one of the major European Internet Exchange – has already gained the participation of NGI, SUPERNAP Italia and Italtel as technological partner, while KPNQwest Italia, Vuetel Italia and other operators of primary importance have announced their intention to join. The new site will start with 1,000 sqm. data and interconnection center space, which can be easily expanded up to 10,000 sqm.
Given the presence of a large number of operators since the launch phase, the new Sicily hub has the ambition to become the natural collector and interconnection point for the 135,000 km of Submarine cables currently reaching Sicily island. Thanks to the presence of MIX, Milano Internet eXchange, recreating the collocation and interconnection ecosystem of Milan (Via Caldera Hub), Open Hub Med will not be a mere Landing Station facility, but it will have a strategic role such as other internationally recognized landing and interconnection points, like Marseille’s in France. The “tri-pole Palermo-Bari-Milan” will be the new privileged route for the internet traffic coming from Asia, Middle East and Africa regions heading to Northern Europe, re-launching Italy’s role within the Global Telecommunication business.
Open Hub Med will offer optimal interconnection conditions among operators in strategic locations in Southern Italy. These points are natural aggregation areas for Internet backbones in the Mediterranean basin able to guarantee key advantages like minimizing wet capacity cable sections and lower network latencies compared to other European interconnection sites. OHM is based on an open multi-stakeholder governance model, and it will be the only Sicilian hub able to guarantee real Neutrality and Openness to every network provider, mixing a strong global/international attitude and solid roots in the Italian and Sicilian territory.
All the players who have decided to invest in this initiative hold the solid record of having promoted an open telecommunication market in Italy over the last 15 years, and firmly believe that this new joint venture is a great opportunity to enhance Italy’s strategic geographical positioning in the submarine cable global scenario, generating new technological value for Sicily and Italy as a whole. This important initial investment is expected to generate new investments in the countrywide telecommunication infrastructure, technologies and fiber optic adoption with beneficial outcomes for the regional economics as well as boosting the digitalization process of the entire country, which is one of the main points in Mr. Renzi’s, Italian PM, agenda.