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Southern Cross NEXT hits the water!


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Southern Cross NEXT hits the water! Wellington, New Zealand – 17 January 2016 – Southern Cross Cable Network today confirmed Marine Route Surveys to commence.

Southern Cross announced that after only 5 months since the public announcement of the Southern Cross NEXT project, interest and support is so strong that the contract for the Marine Route Survey stage had been executed overnight at PTC in Hawaii. The Southern Cross NEXT project was announced publicly at a Customer Information Meeting event held in Sydney in August and attended by over 30 representatives of Southern Cross customers throughout the region.

Customers of Southern Cross, and the Southern Cross NEXT project will be able to take advantage of the benefits such a meshed network design can bring, spreading their capacity across three Southern Cross cable routes, maximising protection and minimising overall network costs compared to stand alone systems. The Southern Cross NEXT project is being designed to transparently interconnect with the existing Southern Cross systems, as well as existing 15 cable station and data-centre locations across Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, Hawaii and the US West Coast currently accessible by Southern Cross.

The initial Southern Cross NEXT build will be a high capacity express route, providing data-centre connectivity between Sydney, Auckland, and Los Angeles, and is on target for completion in 2019. The system is planned to have an initial capacity of more than 60 terabits, adding to the existing 20 terabit capability of the current Southern Cross systems. Given its design and route, it will be the lowest latency path to the United States by some considerable margin, and will provide immediate benefit to customers with additional route diversity.

Capacity customers of Southern Cross and the Southern Cross NEXT project will gain greater utility and return on investment not only of any new acquisition, but also their existing investment in Southern Cross with the continued ability to configure and reconfigure capacity across the various routes and segments of Southern Cross eco-system to meet their and their changing needs.

President and CEO, Anthony Briscoe said “Route planning is a very critical aspect of any submarine cable project as you would expect. Route design typically starts with a Desktop Survey outlining a theoretical route, which Southern Cross has completed. As support and financial commitment to a project grows, further comfort can be gained about making the necessary financial commitments required for a Marine Route survey.”

“It can take many systems a significant period from initial announcement to achieve enough financial confidence to move to the Marine Route survey stage. Indeed, some planned systems never achieve the Marine Route stage. It is therefore extremely pleasing that customer commitment and interest in the Southern Cross NEXT project is so strong that we have been able to achieve this in less than six months”.

“Indeed customer support in Southern Cross and our long-term vision is such that while our Marine Survey will review the planned route for the initial Southern Cross NEXT system, our overall route planning has increased to also encompass the projected second leg of the Southern Cross NEXT programme targeted at completing replacement of the existing highly redundant Southern Cross system by 2029.”

While the Southern Cross NEXT route is planned for completion by 2019, interested capacity customers do not need to wait until this time to meet their growing capacity requirements in the interim. Customers of Southern Cross and the Southern Cross NEXT project will be able to continue to access and grow their capacity on the existing systems in the interim, again leveraging a key benefit of the Southern Cross eco-system.

These include key content locations such as 1 Wilshire, and 600 West 7th in Los Angeles, the Westin Building Exchange in Seattle, and the Palo Alto Internet Exchange amongst others utilised by key content operators, and existing Southern Cross customers, and will allow customers to seamlessly leverage the interconnect arrangements they already have in place.

Asked about the progress of alternate systems and the support of the New Zealand Government and taxpayer via REANNZ, Mr Briscoe replied, “Southern Cross already offers considerable support to REANNZ, through the provision of SXTransPORT which provides 200Gbs of free capacity in support of science, education and research sectors in Australia and New Zealand. Our 15-year partnership with AARNET has helped support key research in the fields of astronomy, health and medicine, food security, particle physics, climate science, networking technologies and more.” He went on to say “it is comforting to see the Government understand the importance and key role that submarine cables play to both the New Zealand industry and economy. We look forward to engaging with Government representatives around their support for the Southern Cross NEXT programme”.

End of Release

Tags: Cables, Capacity, Company, Configuration, Directors, Future, Industry, Milestones, Network, News, Services

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