Madrid-based Islalink is building IONIAN, a 24-fibre pair ultra-low-loss fibre optic cable across the Ionian Sea from Crotone in southern Italy to Preveza in Greece.
IONIAN has Contract In Force and is due to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Through the partnership, EXA Infrastructure will offer Islalink a fibre route between Crotone and the Italian data centre hubs of Milan and Rome.
It will also construct the beach manhole and front-haul ducts in Crotone, and provide maintenance services for the Cable Landing Station (CLS).
EXA Infrastructure is set to become a main anchor customer on the new cable and will construct a new 345-kilometre high fibre-count G.652D cable between its existing network in Bari and Crotone.
Martijn Blanken, CEO of EXA Infrastructure, said: “Our partnership with Islalink forms the first phase of our expansion with a high-quality, geographically-differentiated route. We continuously invest in network expansion where our customers need it most.
“IONIAN will offer far greater capacity than existing sub-sea routes, and for EXA Infrastructure forms part of our wider plan not only to serve the growing demand of services between the two countries but also improving connectivity to the Balkan region and the high-growth Turkish market, as well as surrounding Middle Eastern nations.”
Also commenting, Esther Garcés, CEO of Islalink, added: “Islalink has taken a major step in its international expansion by building IONIAN, the most advanced fibre route directly connecting Athens and Thessaloniki with Milan and Rome. With our landing infrastructure in Crotone, designed to accommodate multiple cables, Crotone becomes an alternative and secure landing point in south Italy.
“Having EXA Infrastructure as a partner is key for the project: its strong presence in Italy, with a nation-wide fibre network, its extensive pan-European network infrastructure footprint and its expertise in the deployment of terrestrial infrastructure for submarine cables give us a lot of confidence in such a challenging endeavour.”
EXA Infrastructure is one of the largest dedicated digital infrastructure platform connecting Europe and North America, supporting 1,500 customers across 103,000 kilometres of fibre network that connects 300 cities.
The network features more than 500 Points of Presence (POPs), spanning 31 countries, 14 data centres and 300 colocation facilities, as well as three wholly-owned transatlantic subsea cables.