Look back at 25 years of interconnection! Visit our anniversary website at withoutyou.de-cix.net

Geographical growth and records in peak traffic

Entering the most exciting digital decade since the inception of the Internet

In the remarkable year 2020, DE-CIX experienced one milestone after the other. The past months have shown us how important a functioning, secure, and reliable digital infrastructure is for all areas of life. Despite the challenging conditions brought on by the global Covid-19 pandemic, DE-CIX was able to maintain its position as the operator of the largest Internet Exchange and home to the largest carrier and data center neutral interconnection ecosystem in the world. It was able to provide uninterrupted service to customers connected to its exchanges – helping to keep data flowing during physical lockdowns.

Within just a few days in March 2020, average global data traffic rose between 15% and 30%, depending on the region. This resulted in the largest annual increase in peak traffic at DE-CIX Frankfurt in its entire history – including the breaking of two world records – reaching 10.3 terabits per second in November. Other DE-CIX locations around the world also rose to the challenge, with a rise in peak traffic of around 30% across the board. DE-CIX, therefore, played a part in keeping economies afloat and people in contact during the sustained global crisis, the like of which we have not seen in modern times.

At DE-CIX, we are working to provide our customers with the best interconnection services possible for their evolving needs. With our two-pronged strategic approach of diversifying services and creating an increasingly dense geographical map of interconnection points, DE-CIX can offer an ever-larger proportion of the world’s markets low-latency interconnection; able to do justice to the needs and the applications of today and tomorrow.


Harald A. Summa Harald Summa
Chief Executive Officer

DE-CIX global growth in 2020

Customer growth
Connected capacity growth
100 GE ports growth

Technical update: Growth under challenging conditions

In the unusual year of 2020, the Internet became an essential aid to continued communication and economic activity, as the Covid-19 pandemic shut down one region of the globe after another. This had an enormous impact on both the amount and the composition of data traffic. The effects of the increased traffic volume could be easily absorbed: either by using existing reserve capacity or by quickly switching additional bandwidth.

The enormous growth seen across the DE-CIX infrastructure all over the world was complemented by increasing geographical growth for DE-CIX in 2020. In total, DE-CIX established four new exchanges during the year, with the new IXs in Barcelona, Chicago, Richmond, and Singapore all announced during the year. Two further exchanges were established as part of the new DE-CIX as a Service program: SEECIX powered by DE-CIX in Greece in partnership with the data center operator Lamda Hellix (now Interxion), and Ruhr-CIX powered by DE-CIX in Germany, in collaboration with the data center operator and city carriers of DOKOM21, TMR and GELSEN-NET.

In Frankfurt in 2020, the new Blackholing Advanced service became available as a beta version and the Microsoft Azure Peering Service (MAPS) was introduced. Meanwhile, access to the DirectCLOUD service was expanded to Mumbai and Dubai, making it accessible at a majority of DE-CIX locations. The flagship Frankfurt exchange achieved a further milestone in 2020, with the connection of the 1000th customer.

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Dr. Thomas King Thomas King
Chief Technology Officer

25 Years DE-CIX: The Internet comes of age

In 2020, DE-CIX celebrated its 25th birthday under the shadow of the Covid-19 pandemic – challenging, certainly, but also indicative of how much the Internet has developed in the last quarter of a century. The pandemic showed just how essential the Internet is for business and private life – not just on the global scale, but also locally. The story of how the Internet developed to the extent that it has, and the contributions of the different players in the digital infrastructure industry, was the focus of the DE-CIX 25 Years anniversary campaign, “Without You”.

Central to the campaign was the virtual DE-CIX Anniversary Party on 26 June, which played host to more than 8,600 unique views of the show from all over the world, and the campaign website withoutyou.de-cix.net was visited over 70,000 times. Thus, in our 25th birthday year, we were able to set an outstanding example and to raise awareness for DE-CIX, our partners, and our community.

The integration of partners and clients into the campaign strengthened their relationships with DE-CIX and further fortified DE-CIX’s position as a global interconnection hub. By also involving DE-CIX staff, the campaign was further designed to drive employee engagement.

The Internet as we know it would not have been possible without you.

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Stephan Rohloff Stephan Rohloff
Chief Marketing Officer

The DE-CIX Internet Exchanges worldwide

  • 2,200+ connected networks
  • 27 IXs
  • 100+ partners
  • 500+ cities
  • 80+ countries

Solid growth and huge demand for more bandwidth

As a result of the challenging situation and lockdowns in 2020 due to the pandemic, people and businesses relied more and more heavily on digital infrastructure and applications, such as video conferencing, streaming, and gaming.

DE-CIX Frankfurt twice broke its own record in 2020, 25 years since its inception in 1995, reaching 9 Tbit/s data throughput in March and crossing the 10 Tbit/s barrier in November, an overall plus of 28% compared to the peak traffic in 2019. Customers extended their bandwidth at the DE-CIX flagship IX by 26% to close to 52 Tb connected capacity, with a 33% growth in 100GE ports.

In 2020, the German regional exchanges in Hamburg, Dusseldorf, and Munich extended their success story in all aspects. The northern-most German IX, DE-CIX Hamburg, increased its customer bandwidth by a substantial 127% and enjoyed a rise in peak traffic of close to 150%. DE-CIX Dusseldorf experienced customer growth of just shy of 65%, while the southernmost German IX, DE-CIX Munich, increased its peak traffic by over 105%, with customer bandwidth growing by roughly 30%.

“The Internet was more important than ever to connect people during the lockdown phases. The numbers clearly showed us that people and businesses used video applications to talk, chat, play, and of course stream, more than ever before. Traffic increased by up to 120%.”

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Andreas Sturm Andreas Sturm
Chief Business Development Officer

Getting closer to the edge

Creating the largest neutral interconnection ecosystem in North America

“As a neutral exchange operator, we have the ability to establish relationships with many data center operators and network operators without competing with them – rather, enhancing their abilities to sell their solutions. The model has certainly worked, and our tremendous success first in New York and then in Dallas has allowed us to continue our expansion to Chicago and Richmond.”

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Ed d'Agostino Ed d’Agostino
Vice President DE-CIX North America

Confirming DE-CIX’s importance for the interconnection of networks in North America

Solid growth for Southern Europe’s Internet Exchanges

“The year 2020 was difficult for all of us, especially since we couldn’t be with our families and friends in person to celebrate special occasions. However, the power of digital communication brings us all closer to each other virtually. DE-CIX in Southern Europe is part of that digital value chain, not just bringing networks together, but also helping to bring people closer together.”

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Theresa Bobis
Regional Director Southern Europe

Solid and continuous growth

Moscow and Saint-Petersburg offer DE-CIX interconnection services

“When we talk about classic peering services, then the next potential markets in the region are those with weaker connectivity and high population density, like Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and neighboring countries. We will ensure that these regions also benefit from the best possible interconnection in the future.”

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Maxim Pozdnyakov Maxim Pozdnyakov
Regional Director Northern & Eastern Europe

Celebrating 5 years of DE-CIX Istanbul

“Despite the global pandemic, 2020 was a successful year, bringing DE-CIX Istanbul closer to becoming the Digital Hub of the region – thanks to our new record peak traffic of 240 Gbit/s and the high customer demand for our cloud services – through the DirectCLOUD service – as well as the fantastic DE-CIX Istanbul Virtual Summit 2020.”

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Bülent Şen
Regional Director Turkey

Bringing the connected customer capacity to a new all-time high

UAE-IX expanding to new locations in the United Arab Emirates

“The global pandemic has made clear that data needs to be as close to the customer and the user as possible to increase quality, security, and resilience, as well as to reduce latency. So, it was a special milestone for us to sign the agreement with DU in December for the expansion of UAE-IX to five more sites in the UAE. With the extended footprint of UAE-IX, we are underlining the strong position of the UAE as the data hub for the GCC and beyond, and we are bringing data much closer to the edge.”

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Marco Brandstaetter
Regional Director Middle East & India

Tremendous growth in peak traffic

Exciting innovations and expansions for DE-CIX India in 2020

“I have always believed that having a great idea is good, but execution is of paramount importance. In 2020 at DE-CIX India, we have unambiguously demonstrated to the industry how we are able to significantly impact and redefine the market. We became the market leader in India with a rapidly growing customer base. This is thanks to our all-around commitment to customer-first ideology, which ensured first-in-class initiatives to become the most preferred IX ecosystem. We are positive that DE-CIX Mumbai will become the No. 1 IX in the APAC region soon.”

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Sudhir Kunder, Sr. VP
National Head Sales DE-CIX Interwire, India

Rapidly growing customer base

Gaining a foothold in new markets – expanding into Southeast Asia

“Southeast Asia represents some of the fastest-growing economies in the world, with Singapore – one of the world’s largest Internet hubs – right in its center. This is why we decided to enter Singapore, along with its neighboring market Malaysia. It is our mission to support the Internet transformation in the region, meaning more content will be made available closer to the end users instead of being delivered from Singapore. We intend to develop the largest distributed and neutral interconnection ecosystem in Southeast Asia, which will allow customers from many markets to interconnect both locally and across the region.”

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Frank Orlowski Frank Orlowski
SVP Corporate Development

Partner program: Partner community integral to business growth

In 2020, the DE-CIX partner program was extended. Not only were the resources doubled within the team, but also DE-CIX introduced a program component for Channel Alliance partners: The onboarding, support, and commercial conditions were tailored towards the needs of the ‘Trusted Advisors’ of enterprise customers. At the same time as expanding the footprint of our program, DE-CIX also relies on the force of the existing and strong reselling partners. These partners were responsible for adding more than 100 sub customers in 2020 across all DE-CIX Internet Exchanges worldwide. The top three resellers in 2020 were GlobeNET, RETN, and Turk Telekom International.

“The expansion of the DE-CIX portfolio focuses on opening up new customer segments and verticals, as well as different markets. This results in the need for different categories of partners, the coverage of which brings a high degree of diversity to our partner landscape. Therefore, we have developed different types of partner models to meet the needs, demands, and roles of each partner.”

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Melanie Kempf
Director Global Partner Relations

DE-CIX portfolio of interconnection services: Some exciting innovations and new services

“The use of interconnection and network services will increase sharply and, similar to the way cloud services are requested and instantiated today, will be available where they are needed with seemingly infinite capacity in the shortest possible time. In particular, machine-to-machine communication will drive this trend by imposing dynamic changes in network requirements and massively growing bandwidth demand. The new analytic age will process significantly more data in a distributed manner in order to enable data-driven businesses – this will particularly affect enterprises and large industry segments in any vertical.”

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Christoph Dietzel
Global Head of Products & Research

Strategic outlook

With a new era of digitalization and an urgent need for low latency interconnection services, working towards greater geographical density and a colourful portfolio of secure and resilient interconnection services is a bigger goal than ever.

Latency is the new currency – bringing digital infrastructure closer to people and business

All areas of business and private life rely more heavily today than ever before on digital applications. These have proven their worth during the Covid-19 pandemic, finding their place in our professional and personal lives.

To ensure the best performance of digital applications and services, latency needs to be minimized; meaning that digital applications need to get closer to the users. To get closer to the user, the digital infrastructure that houses and transports data needs to be at the edge of the network – as close as possible to the point where the user connects to the network or where the data is being generated.

Using a two-pronged approach – working towards greater geographical density, as well as developing premium interconnection services for specific market environments – DE-CIX is supporting the transformation to a digital world of working and living. Doing this together with our many partners brings more businesses online and serves an increasing portion of the world’s vast population. In this way, DE-CIX is helping to pave the way for the bright future of the digital economy and the digital enterprise.

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Ivo A. Ivanov Ivo Ivanov
Chief Operating Officer
Annual report 2020

To read the full report,
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Read the full report

DE-CIX Annual Report 2019

In 2019, milestones were achieved for many of our exchanges, and DE-CIX Frankfurt continued its success by breaking its own peak traffic world record. As well as entering the South East Asian market, our team was busy around the world, extending the reach of existing locations, setting up further enabled sites and access sites, and developing new services. On our 25th birthday year, we can see that the Internet and the digital infrastructures on which it is based have come of age. Read more.

DE-CIX Annual Report 2018

In 2018 the DE-CIX world kept growing and responding to our customers’ needs and demands. We further broadened our interconnection footprint with the aim of making interconnection as easy as possible for our customers, wherever they need it. We therefore focused on both new services and new locations in 2018. The success of this interconnection strategy was demonstrated in the considerable growth in customer numbers, connected customer capacity, and turnover. Read more.

DE-CIX Annual Report 2017

In the 2017 financial year, DE-CIX successfully maintained its position as the world leader in operating Internet Exchanges. Consolidated total turnover across all parts of the company rose by 9 percent from 2016 to reach 31.8 million Euro. The DE-CIX Internet Exchanges in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and North America, which now total 13 worldwide, saw consolidated customer growth of almost 14 percent in 2017 and meanwhile serve more than 1,500 customers from over 100 countries.
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DE-CIX Annual Report 2016

2016 was another year of excellence in interconnection and global growth for DE-CIX. Cutting-edge, world-best interconnection technology, peak traffic of 5.6 Terabits per second (Tbps), and connected capacity up well above 20 Terabits in Frankfurt. But DE-CIX is much more than the sum of its technological parts. DE-CIX is where networks meet, certainly, but that also means it is where the people behind and within those networks meet. Read more.

DE-CIX Annual Report 2015

DE-CIX Management GmbH has experienced a successful year 2015 – both in its home market of Germany as well as in its international subsidiaries – with high growth rates in customer numbers, reseller partners, and data traffic. In particular, a spectacular increase in data traffic over the Frankfurt exchange (43 percent up on 2014 figures) and in connected capacity (up 44 percent) show a direct correlation with the popularity of 100GE ports, where sales having more than doubled in 2015. Read more.