GCX will self-finance the construction of its recently-announced Eagle express submarine cable systems, from Mumbai—Westward to Italy and Eastward to Hong Kong, with no upfront financing or investment requirements from the company. The company did not reveal financing options for the investment.
GCX will also announce additional enhancements to its data center targeting emerging markets. The Eagle cable system, targeted for the end of 2020, will be based on 100G technology. The new cable network will be four/six fiber pair systems, with an initial design capacity of 12-24Tbps per fiber pair, using Coherent Submarine Fiber.
The company is yet to announce its technology partners for building the submarine cable network. It is believed that the current financial status of Reliance Communications will not influence technology companies such as Ciena, Nokia, Infinera against partnering with GCX for building the network.
“The Cloud and Fiber initiative is our response to the key requirements in the marketplace, driven by the explosive growth in Cloud and infrastructure programs by enterprises around the world,” said Bill Barney, CEO of Reliance Communications & Chairman/CEO, Global Cloud Xchange.
The demand for international bandwidth connected to Asian countries is expected to increase more than 10-fold between 2017 and 2023, while bandwidth linking Europe to the Middle East and the rest of Asia is forecast to grow seven-fold in the same period, according to Alan Mauldin, research director at TeleGeography.
India provides a strategic location in the context of the larger global subsea cable network. New cables extending to the East and West from India will help accommodate capacity demand and enhance network resiliency.
GCX’s cable infrastructure has attracted major Cloud players in the country, including New York-listed Alibaba. Alibaba has partnered with GCX to enable Alibaba Cloud to offer its Cloud services to start-ups and larger companies in India.