Fierce Telecom Leaders - Jarrett Appleby, CMO, Equinix

Data networking is old hat to Equinix's Chief Marketing Officer Jarrett Appleby. In fact, the former CMO of Reliance Globalcom came to Equinix in December 2008 with over 25 years of telecom and datacom experience under his belt. Fierce Telecom Senior Editor Sean Buckley recently caught up with Appleby to talk about the evolution of the data center market.

FierceTelecom: A lot has changed since Jay Adelson founded Equinix during the heyday of the colocation market. To start, talk about the evolution of the data center market?

Appleby: I joined Equinix in December 2008, so I am pretty new to the company but I have been in the network and services industry for 26 years. If you go back 10 years ago, there were a lot of builds that were more speculative. In the past ten years it has kind of sorted out in terms of the outsourcing business. We're in the data center outsourcing space. If you're look at the trends there, you're seeing people move into the crowd--these hosting providers like Savvis and Teramark--and then guys like us who are pure plays for outsourcing data center infrastructure facilities which is colo and interconnection.

We have ridden the wave to really build out highly reliable facilities around the world. The big thing last year was a lot of the financial challenges put us in a good place because we have been building quite a bit over the past few years and take market share. It's been a good driver for outsourcing from clients.

FierceTelecom: What are some of the drivers for your customers to work with Equinix?

It's a couple of things. One is there's a big trend towards multi-sourcing. They might build their own data services in some markets, but in others they can't build out and continue the IT spending so they're looking at partners because it's high risk build and they want to go to a highly reliable partner. About two-thirds of our customers are about to run out of space within the next few years. In this market they don't have the capital to build out data centers and would rather invest in their core business. It's really this multi-sourcing and this need for architecture and support for applications globally. That is putting someone like us who has infrastructure in 18 markets and 45 data centers in 10 countries and are a good foundation for enterprise customers that want to support their enterprise application or network requirements or SaaS deployments in a good position.

FierceTelecom: Forbes named Equinix as one of the fastest growing companies. What do you attribute that growth to?

One is we bought in and integrated some companies. We bought Pahana 6-7 years ago and we bought IX Europe a few years ago. We have really positioned our brand and this global customer experience post around a global service delivery platform. Customers know they are going to have the same look, feel and service around the world leveraging our infrastructure. That really makes us unique in this space because you might be able to get local cheap data centers in the old colo world, but you're not going to have this access to our platform and our networks we can do around the world.

Read Part 2 of the interview here...