Interview with FiberLight for ITW 2016
Data Center POST recently spoke with Ron Kormos, Chief Strategy Officer and Jim Hintze, SVP of Sales from FiberLight, about what the company plans to accomplish at the upcoming International Telecoms Week (ITW), the world’s largest meeting for the global wholesale telecommunications community. ITW 2016 will take place at the Hyatt Regency and Swissotel in Chicago, IL from May 8-11, 2016. In our Q&A with Mr. Kormos and Mr. Hintze, we discussed the topics of selling network services, adapting to customer demands and how technology plays a role in the company. FiberLight was one of the first fiber-optic network construction companies to build within state and local rights-of-way. The company owns over 1,500,000 fiber miles of network in 30 metropolitan markets, with over 17,000 backbone access points, 1,000 on-net locations, presence in nearly 100 data centers and active expansion activities.
Q and A with Data Center POST’s contributing editor, Kathy Xu
Data Center POST, Kathy Xu (DCP-KX) Question: How has selling network services changed for FiberLight in the past 5 years
FiberLight, Ron Kormos, CSO (FIBERLIGHT-RK) Answer: Our customer requirements and type of customers have changed. 5 years ago we had little if any wireless customers, the bandwidth needs were too small to make the financial metrics work. Today, wireless is our number one vertical. T1’s are no longer enough bandwidth as applications, data storage, use of the Internet, Cloud etc. are increasing customer demands for higher bandwidth. We are also seeing more data center connectivity as bandwidth increases from content providers.
(DCP-KX) Q: How is FiberLight adapting to customer demands?
(FIBERLIGHT-RK) A: FiberLight is adapting to customer demands by focusing on data center connectivity, expanding our network footprint, and connecting cell towers. 5 years ago we had less than 2,000 route miles and less than 100 towers. Today, we have 12,000 miles and well over 1,000 towers connected. FiberLight is also putting more focus on customer verticals and the higher bandwidth users.
FiberLight, Jim Hintze, VP Sales (FIBERLIGHT-JH) Answer: FiberLight has recognized customers have different bandwidth needs for specific applications. Rather than offering only lit services like most providers, FiberLight will develop an appropriate solution that includes dark fiber, optical, Ethernet or any combination that optimizes the bandwidth that will allow our customers to scale and respond to the changing requirements of their business.
(DCP-KX) Q: What do you hope to accomplish at ITW 2016 this year?
(FIBERLIGHT-JH) A: Cloud networking and the interconnectivity that has resulted from companies moving infrastructure and applications to Data Centers, Colocation and Internet Exchanges continues to grow exponentially. The trend is expanding from regional centers to global points of presence that require international service providers to create a global fabric that interconnects cloud-based application providers. FiberLight has plans to meet with many of the ITW attending companies from APAC and Europe that are looking to establish a North American fiber footprint to serve these growing applications.
(DCP-KX) Q: How has technology changed the way FiberLight deploys and/or manages its network?
(FIBERLIGHT-RK) A: Due to the size of Texas we have had to deploy some 60 layer one devices and hundreds of layer two devices in order to connect the thousands of miles of network. Customer requirements are making it necessary to deploy diverse redundant rings and the right equipment that can properly switch and allow us to expand services. DIA has become a major impact in our business – something that was once an add-on service now is becoming the main service for some customers.
(DCP-KX) Q: Are there any new technologies that FiberLight is currently evaluating or trialing?
(FIBERLIGHT-RK) A: We’re seeing an increasing interest in data security for some of our key verticals, namely in highly innovative companies and in healthcare. To address these needs, we’re looking into private network encryption that would protect in-flight data after it leaves the customer.
(DCP-KX) Q: What ways has technology advancements affected FiberLight – either as a company or as a network provider (or both)?
(FIBERLIGHT-RK) A: Bandwidth requirements for content and increasing reliance on applications have had a major impact on our customer demographic and the types of solutions we provide. We have seen a greater need for applications and application consolidation within FiberLight, so we understand and relate to this enterprise driver.
DCP-KX: Thank you for your time and we hope ITW 2016 is a successful event for you and your team. Readers, if you are interested in learning more about FiberLight, please visit their website: http://www.fiberlight.com/