Ethernet services

Yipes, Exponential-e Hook Up

Ethernet service provider Exponential-e Ltd. in the U.K. and Yipes Enterprise Services Inc. in the U.S. today announced an interconnection agreement that extends their respective transatlantic networks. (See Exponential-e, Yipes Team.)

The carriers say that for their customers in the financial, media, and legal worlds, transatlantic connectivity is a must. Yipes VP of marketing Keao Caindec says the carrier counts 30 percent of the largest law firms in the U.S. as customers in addition to several major banks, and their demand for Layer 2 Ethernet connectivity across the Atlantic is growing.

"Both are targeting key industry verticals like the financial sector, where corporations are looking for reliable and secure Layer 2 VPN solutions as an alternative to Layer 3 IP VPNs that require service providers to get involved in managing their network," notes Stan Hubbard, a senior analyst at Heavy Reading.

Although the two have been informally cooperating for some time, “we have only recently formalized that relationship into a partnership,” says Caindec.

While Exponential-e’s service previously provided customers with links to New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles, working with Yipes has opened up access to the , which covers 120 cities in 14 metros. In turn, the partnership takes the beyond its London POP and into the 50 other U.K. towns and cities on Exponential-e's network.

Although both offer services in European cities such as Frankfurt, Paris, and Amsterdam, Caindec says Yipes will continue to use multiple carriers to provide services there, including Interoute Communications Ltd. , which is also a partner.

This partnership is the latest example of carriers hooking up their VPLS services internationally. Exponential-e recently launched its Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS) network, while Yipes rolled out its own VPLS services in September. (See Yipes Launches Global VPLS Service and Exponential-e Intros VPLS.)

“We’re talking about two very experienced companies that have been living and breathing Ethernet for several years, and they are taking their multipoint Ethernet offerings to a higher performance level with VPLS,” notes Hubbard.

It follows a similar deal between Broadwing Communications LLC and Hutchison Global Communications Ltd. (HGC) to interconnect their services between the U.S. and Asia. (See Broadwing Broadens VPLS.)

The challenge for these providers as they expand abroad is interoperability. "Ethernet is offered in different ways by different carriers around the world," says Caindec. "Although the operational and working processes between different carriers are important, we're finding NOC [network operations center] to NOC services, SLAs, coordinating technical roadmaps, are more important for delivering services."

— Nicole Willing, Reporter, Light Reading

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