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AMS-IX at a glance

Total connected parties
Peak Traffic
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2018 was an exciting year for me. In my first year at the organisation I mainly focused on setting priorities and strategizing. Furthermore, I reviewed the current internal processes and the organisation as a whole.

Similar to 2017, external circumstances such as: consolidation of parties in our ecosystem, integration of services and strong competitors entering our markets with new propositions and additional commercial services influenced our performance. For Amsterdam, we were able to decrease our prices- per 1st January 2018- and still show a modest revenue growth to EUR 21.5 million. AMS-IX Caribbean and Hong Kong continue to strengthen their market positions by extending into additional locations and introduce new services. The AMS-IX India model has shown that sharing knowledge, deliver NOC services and supplying software to our local partner Sify not only contributes to brand awareness, but also results in attracting new parties to AMS-IX’s home market in Amsterdam. AMS-IX India is growing steadily and has become an important player in the region.

USA Chicago and Bay Area did not show sufficient revenue growth, therefore both Management Team and Supervisory Board focussed on finding a solution for existing customers in the USA supplying suitable services at similar levels of quality. During the Q4 board meeting, the Supervisory Board adopted the Management Team’s proposal to liquidate the US activities unless a suitable party to facilitate customers in the USA is contracted by March 2019.

We (the Management Team) and a number of assigned people in the organisation, implemented the new strategy as adopted by the Supervisory Board and approved during the General Meeting in December 2017, amongst other things leading to the launch of new services such as EasyAccess and IX-as-a-Service (IXaaS).

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Two, out of the three pillars of our ‘Focus on the Product’ strategy were executed in 2018:
1. Evaluate products and services to help customers better utilize their ports, open up our ecosystem, show connected networks, share and promote services and make connecting through our ecosystem easy. 2. Develop new products; The EasyAccess proposition enables connectivity for regions outside of the Amsterdam Metro region.

In 2018 we welcomed customers from new markets, such as the enterprise market, particularly fast-moving consumer goods, logistics and payment services. We are working on attracting more customers from these markets with solutions to improve their business applications.

On a different note, after serious consideration we decided to decommission our New York location. In India, we moved to the GPX facility, in collaboration with our partner Sify. Traffic in India keeps growing steadily. In Hong Kong, we carried out successful joint marketing activities with HGC. In the Caribbean region, we will deploy a new data centre in Curaçao by end of Q1 2019.

Looking ahead to 2019

The 3rd pillar of our ‘Focus on the Product’ strategy – Explore new markets - is scheduled for 2019. The IX-as-a-Service proposition targets international markets.

To reach new markets and customers, we will also introduce a new provisioning system. This will enhance billing and offer greater flexibility in enabling applications, third-party services and product development opportunities.

We aim to bring in new EasyAccess customers in Europe and - with our resellers - Asia and South America. With IX-as-a-Service, we will focus on Middle East and Asia. Our provisioning service team will support parties without peering experience and we will better position ourselves in the enterprise market and seek to improve our Cloud Interconnect proposition.

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We do not necessarily have an interest in innovation for the sake of innovation. Instead, we need to innovate in order to improve the performance of the business or provide new services to our customers.

Over the past 18 years, most innovation at AMS-IX was focused on keeping up with growth and traffic volumes. At present, this is less of a necessity because growth has stabilised. What we can do now, is innovate at service level and try to achieve more-with relatively less people-which will allow us to improve our price performance to existing and future customers. Diversify our product and remain an efficient organisation; this is very important to us.

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International Presence


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In 2017 a new strategy was agreed upon, in close cooperation between our members, management team, employees and board. Keywords in this strategy were ‘adding value’, ‘creating scale and cost efficiency’, ‘new business models’ and ‘cooperate’. 2018 was the first year in which this strategy was executed, under leadership of our new CEO Peter van Burgel, who joined in February.

Board developments

At the end of 2018, we said farewell to Sylvie LaPerrière after six years of board membership. Working with Sylvie has been an extremely rewarding experience and I would like to thank her for her contributions to AMS-IX, as well as the way in which she managed the board and cooperated with the management team. We continued to rely on the experience of Mark Cooper (who moved to InterXion - Secretary), Eric Loos (BICS - Treasurer) and Alex Bik (BIT) and welcomed new board member Michael Ourabah (BSO Networks). To become more effective in executing our responsibilities, we increased our focus by creating three small board committees: ‘Finance’, ‘Governance and Compliance’ and ‘Compensation’ - each with its own specific scope and annual planning.

In 2018, my second year on the board, I moved from the position of Treasurer to Chair, following the May 2018 General Meeting. I have perceived cooperation within the board, as well as between board and management team, to be very positive.

Looking ahead

I’m very confident in the future of AMS-IX. We have a seasoned management team, which is well aligned and cooperates constructively with the Executive Board, we have a talented and enthusiastic pool of employees, a sound strategy and healthy financials – nothing can prevent us from reaching our goals

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We focused strongly on compliance and internal processes, triggered by, among other things, the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). I mainly deal with external stakeholders, mostly public authorities, informing them on how the Internet works ‘under the hood’ and lobbying to influence agenda setting and avoid detrimental side effects of new laws and regulations on the Internet ecosystem. Several years ago, we helped set up an industry body - Digitale Infrastructuur Nederland – to support these activities.

Connectivity has become an essential service, like electricity. In 2017, we were officially labelled a ‘critical infrastructure’ provider by the Dutch government. We started being officially regulated as an Internet Exchange in 2018 and are working with the regulatory authorities in 2019 to implement the resulting obligations. We have been voicing our concerns about new legislation governing Dutch intelligence agencies since 2015 with other stakeholders and managed to get important elements of the proposed legislation adapted. To date, this has had no noticeable effect on the industry.

Looking ahead

Events of 2018 are being translated and implemented. New legislation we need to comply with is relatively generic and lower-level legislation still needs to be agreed upon between regulatory authorities and operators. GPDR policies are in place, but as we are moving to a new ERP system, new procedures and processes will have to be defined, configured and enforced.

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In 2018 we focused on improving automation of service provisioning and cleaning up legacy software. In an attempt to optimize our internal processes, we started working on integration with our planned ERP and business support tools. Several incremental improvements were realized, and we’ve been modernizing and streamlining internal software development, testing and integration.

Cooperation with PacketFabric in the USA gradually progressed and provided a foundation for developing our EasyAccess service. With data centre interconnectivity experts DCspine, we launched the first EasyAccess implementation in April, extending our reach in the Netherlands with over 25 data centres. In Q4 we expanded EasyAccess with two additional partnerships to cover several hundred more locations throughout Western Europe.

Looking ahead to 2019

Traditional IXP business (i.e. public peering) has stabilized and we have clear ideas about where we’d like to go next. Decoupling physical ports from the services on top allows us to leverage our platform to provide innovative, flexible, services. Besides closed user groups, this includes quick point-to-point (private interconnect) provisioning, for example, or a service hub where AMS-IX clients and partners can offer and order each other’s services. A natural evolution that helps AMS-IX to stay relevant in an ever-changing internetworking market which, now more than ever, also includes enterprise customers.

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Figures in Amsterdam

200 x 0G

Total active 100G ports

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Connection method of
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GRX peak traffic


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New Connected members
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Number of POPs in AMS-IX Amsterdam

We did not experience all that many changes within the Engineering team during 2018. However, we did complete, and start, several really nice projects that are worth mentioning. First of all, we finalized the DCI Implementations, after 22 months of hard work - 14 months faster than planned. Another project we worked on during 2018 – which we will continue to work on during 2019 - was the SLX Migrations. These caused us a few headaches. But on the bright side, with every project we completed, we gained insight into how to run the next migration more smoothly. At present, we can carry out these implementations in less than half the time we needed to complete the first migration.

Looking ahead to 2019

Throughout 2019, we are planning to finish eight more SLX migrations, which were postponed the year before. One of these is the interconnect between Interxion Science park and Schiphol. We are also expanding to a new POP in Curaçao, the Blue Nap Datacenter, which is expected to go live in Q1 2019. Of course, we will continue to look for ways of making our network more efficient than it already is.

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2018 consisted of a few structural changes for the NOC team. I was appointed NOC Manager in September 2018 and my first challenge was to tackle various operational issues and a number of maintenance activities, as well as to deal with some time-sensitive projects that needed efficient planning in order to meet the respective, tight deadlines. To be more specific, we started the year by trying to stabilize the rollout of various SLX migrations that were planned already in 2017, together with other projects and necessary maintenance tasks (such as firewall migrations, system migrations and implementation of a management network).

In a way, although we started the year on the wrong foot, dealing with issues from the year before, we managed to pick up the pace and complete a lot of projects, e.g. in Q4 we managed to complete 3 projects, within slightly more than a month’s time!

Looking ahead to 2019

Our plan for 2019 is to complete four more SLX migrations (EQX AM1, EQX AM3, IX9, NIKHEF) by mid-Q2, on top of the one (EQX AM7) that will be performed in Q1. We are also working with our vendor in San Francisco on a software CAT, based on the results of which, we will continue with our planning and the execution of installing the tested version on the existing SLX-enabled sites and proceed with a few SLX migrations for two additional sites (Iron Mountain and EQX AM5) by the end of the year. The plan is to have one side of all the full-SLX sites running on the new version, which will enable us to support our reseller program on SLX switches thus simplify the specific implementation by migrating the reseller connections to the SLX switches and remove the temporary MLXe-8s.

In addition, we will be busy dealing with the new POP in Curaçao (we are working towards getting it ready to go live by the end of Q1) and “refreshing” the existing ECP site. This includes replacing line-cards (to facilitate customer growth), upgrading the existing version of our management and production switches, as well as of our AS28017/wan router to the newest available versions, and replacing our redundant servers with new hardware. Last but not least, we will also be working on various optimizations related to internal projects and looking into how we can continue offering the best quality service possible.

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In 2018 there was never a dull moment in our department. Activities included positioning AMS-IX as an A-brand, evaluating and developing products and services, and exploring new markets (EasyAccess, IX-as-a-Service).

Over 250 people attended our MORE-IP event in May to discuss developments, exchange ideas and share feedback. We also organised the Global Peering Forum in Seattle in April and the European Peering Forum in Athens, Greece, in September. These successful events received excellent reviews from attendees.

We created a fresh design and more user-friendly User Interface (UI) for our new corporate website. Our communication strategy was aligned with company strategy, enhanced and optimized. We supported the EasyAccess introduction and communicated the appointment of CEO Peter van Burgel.

CTO Henk Steenman created the first of several enthusiastically received Vlogs. Our first ‘Community Talk’ Vlog, featuring Erik Bais from A2B Internet, discussed the same topic: protecting vital infrastructures against DDoS attacks.

Looking ahead to 2019

On 7 January 1994, the Amsterdam Internet Exchange was mentioned for the first time in an e-mail. We could not have foreseen that AMS-IX would shape the IX business and become the company it is today. Our 25th anniversary will be the main theme of MORE-IP in June.

We will keep educating stakeholders through collaborations, partnerships and industry-related events. We will focus on new services and exploring markets (such as enterprise), sponsoring new events to reach new audiences, develop innovative marketing techniques and sharpen our mission and core values

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2018 was very busy. We started the year defining the scope of GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) and its impact on AMS-IX, created an inventory of personal customer data and implementing fixes. We drew up an inventory of systems, applications, and contractual arrangements with various parties and cleaned up legacy customer data. We redesigned the corporate website in a cross-departmental collaboration, working on the web framework, content mapping and copywriting.

Our first transport provider began using our EasyAccess service in April, followed by more partnerships throughout the year. We worked on customer onboarding workflow, application forms and orders on the portal, contractual processes, ordering and provisioning testing and completed related documentation. We welcomed new customers right after going live.

We decommissioned AMS-IX New York in June with US Peering Coordinator Phil Matte, making various changes to and taking care of communication with customers, processing disconnections, contractual changes and more.

I think our team did a great job considering the workload. I am very proud!

Looking ahead to 2019

In Q1-Q2 we will be focusing on the implementation of selected Business Applications and on the optimisation of our internal processes. We will be busy streamlining the implementation process and making sure all changes are managed smoothly. In addition, we will be assisting with the development of a new customer portal which will offer an enhanced customer experience. To hone EasyAccess, dedicated people will be working on it from our side in 2019.

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