2021 in numbers

In Amsterdam

Connected networks


Total capacity


Internet Data Volume


+0% growth

Peak traffic


Location of connected members & customers

New members
  • 15% Netherlands
  • 47% Europe (excl. NL)
  • 38% Outside Europe
Total members
  • 20% Netherlands
  • 50% Europe (excl. NL)
  • 30% Outside Europe

Total active 100G ports


+0% growth

Word fromthe CEO

AMS-IX CEO Peter van Burgel shares his experiences as head of AMS-IX.

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Peter van Burgel,


“As I write this, the world is trying to recover from the global Covid pandemic with restrictions still in place in various countries, resulting in supply chain problems and shortages driving up prices. At the same time, a war has started in Europe with Russia invading Ukraine, resulting in more uncertainty and sanctions against the Russian government and organizations. Fair to say we are not just living in a time of change, but in changing times.

The internet in a time of crisis

For many years, the internet has been a utility. The pandemic and the war in Ukraine are both underlining its importance. During the pandemic, the internet proved its value by allowing people to work from home, or remotely, and stay connected with family and friends, as it was practically impossible to travel. The robustness of the internet allowed this shift to happen almost overnight without major problems. Of course, the increased traffic requires additional investments, but in the early days of the pandemic the internet at large was coping quite well with the increased demand. Conversely, the lockdowns also showed the importance of real-life social interaction within organizations, companies, and schools as well as in everyday life. This touches on how we interact with each other through social media, but also how we respond to fake news and malicious content, laying bare some of the challenges society must find the answers to.

As the world is getting to grips with Covid, Russia invaded Ukraine. In doing so, Russia not only attacked a sovereign state but also challenged international legislation, treaties and agreements. The global community responded with heavy sanctions on Russia and support for the Ukraine. More than anything, this is another human tragedy in a short space of time. Like many industry organizations, AMS-IX has people from Ukraine and neighboring countries on its team, who have friends and relatives in Ukraine and Russia. AMS-IX condemns war, and our thoughts are with the victims, while we try to help our employees and their families as best we can. AMS-IX also supports humanitarian programs to help the victims of the conflict.

Again, the internet is an important utility and a source of unfiltered, practically unlimited information. Throughout the short history of the internet, this has proven to be an invaluable (re)source in times of conflict, and this is true again now. The flipside is the possibility of fake news and so­called Cyber warfare. This, in turn sparks debate around blocking certain parties or even entire nations from accessing the internet. AMS-IX believes that simply stopping parties or entire nations from accessing the internet is the wrong thing to do.

Do we care?

At the start of 2021, most of us felt Covid would disappear at some point during the year. Unfortunately, we were proven wrong and Covid was with us for the entire year. During that period, we started discussing our purpose and ‘story’. We care about the internet and stand for neutral and open internet, but what does that mean?

Internet should be available and accessible to everybody, wherever you live or happen to be. Moreover, we’re committed to protecting the governance of the internet and making sure that no single entity (or just a few entities) can dictate the way in which the internet develops. For almost 30 years, the decentralized nature of the internet enabled tremendous innovation. One could argue it is the best invention ever. A place where the world can meet and exchange ideas freely. Unfortunately, there will always be forces that want to abuse the technology or open nature of the internet and do harm, or influence or drive market dominance.

Because we care about the internet, AMS-IX increased its efforts to address some of the flaws and challenges we see today. We care about an open and neutral internet, we care about a safe internet and we care about the increasing ecological footprint of the machinery that makes up the internet. We do not have all the answers, nor the means to fix it all, but we do have the resolve to join in public discussions and initiatives to protect the original values of the internet, while hardening it against bad actors and developing solutions to address the sustainability concerns.

Two examples from last year showing our commitment to join in the public debate on what a responsible internet should look like are AMS-IX joining EuroISPA and AMS-IX developing an ‘argumentenkaart’ (debate overview) about the use of encryption by OTT­providers. The ‘argumentenkaart’ was presented to representatives of Dutch parliament during the ECP-congress and received a great deal of positive attention. Every party that mattered participated in the creation of the ‘argumentenkaart’ which boosted the quality of the discussions and the final document. Moreover, the overview triggered debate about the use of encryption on many levels, and how authorities can fight crime, without having to tap into encrypted communication. AMS-IX will continue to develop more of these overviews in partnership with ECP to help the open and constructive debate on important internet-related topics.


Looking back at business developments in 2021, total traffic volume grew by 18% compared to 2020, with traffic peaks approaching 11 Tbps. For the first time in AMS-IX history, two new Dutch POPs were opened outside Amsterdam, one in Rotterdam and one in Naaldwijk. Internationally, AMS-IX continues to build on existing partnerships like HGC in the United States and Sify in India. The partnership with Batelco has resulted in numerous traffic peaks during the year and Manama-IX becoming the largest and fastest growing Internet Exchange in the Middle East.

As part of investments in innovation, AMS-IX is one of the founding members of the Amsterdam Data Exchange – AMdEX. In this innovation field lab, parties collaborate to develop and test trusted, fair and scalable technologies to support the emergence of data markets in which its members can freely decide with whom to interact and under which conditions.

Lockdowns and travel bans made it difficult to interact with customers and partners, specifically new ones. AMS-IX participated in many virtual events and organized the first fully virtual MORE-IP event in June, which was well received. As a result, a number of new customers joined the platform. We are looking forward to meeting many of our customers and partners in person again in the months to come.


With Henk Steenman retiring in January the search for a new CTO began. In March 2021, Ruben van den Brink joined AMS-IX and the Management Team as the AMS-IX CTO. Ruben joins AMS-IX from Surf and brings a wealth of experience in developing technical teams, specifically in a fast-changing market with many stakeholders. In a short space of time, Ruben established himself in the role as AMS-IX CTO, bringing new energy internally and externally and focusing on developing AMS-IX technology stack and solutions which are underpinning the services we provide and will develop in the future.


Despite the pandemic continuing, 2021 was a successful year in terms of financial results. However, several underlying trends remain a cause for concern. Revenue was up by 10% on the back of strong public peering business, but gross margin was slightly lower, underpinning the trend of prices dropping. Competition is strong, with multiple alternative solutions and providers in the market, but also with changing traffic patterns as a result of investments in sea cables in the South of Europe and Southern hemisphere. With The Netherlands and Amsterdam as the strongest market, there is concern about the Dutch government’s ‘Digital Strategy’ showing a growing negative sentiment towards Datacenters, whilst aiming to drive innovation with quantum technology and AI.

The continued pandemic also meant travel and events were minimal for another year, resulting in lower costs than budgeted. The additional effort going into the Digital Transformation combined with an increase in staff and temporary support resulted in higher personnel cost and other operational cost.

Finally, accounting for the deferred tax asset of € 0.8 million as a result of losses incurred in the (liquidated) subsidiary AMS-IX, Inc. increased the net result by that same amount. So, a strong financial performance, providing the means for continuing our strategy to Innovate, Optimize and Grow.

I would like to thank our members, customers and partners for the continued support and trust in AMS-IX. Furthermore, a big thank you to the AMS-IX team and AMS-IX Board for continuing to provide a high-quality service in difficult circumstances.

Peter van Burgel


The year 2021 was a balancing act for AMS-IX. AMS-IX Chair Bart van der Sloot reflects on the Board’s perspective during 2021.

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An ongoing balancing act

Bart van der Sloot,

Chairman of the board, AMS-IX

2021 was a balancing act, because we had to find middle ground for multiple dilemma’s. Should we intensify face-to-face contacts? Or keep the team safe during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and focus on online? Work in the office or at home? Accelerate cost reduction for members or invest in growth and innovation (and/or grow financial reserves)? What should we develop internally and what should we outsource? Should we connect every network or stay away from known ‘bad networks’?

Another year, another challenge

At the time of writing this statement (March 2022), the world around us has changed considerably. Where the (finally decreasing...?) impact of COVID-19 dominated large parts of our private and business life over the past two years, we are now confronted with a violent invasion of the Ukraine and the threat of war. Organizations and individuals are evaluating how they can help those who are at risk and whether they can contribute to restricting the impact of the aggressors, and if so, how.

With the internet playing a vital role, distributing legitimate as well as fake information and facilitating contact between people worldwide, Internet Exchanges are suddenly confronted with the question whether they ought to exclude certain networks or content. Quite a different challenge to what we were facing in 2021.

2021 was another year that showed healthy financial results and continued strong progress in all three areas of the strategy - Innovate, Optimize and Grow - despite challenging circumstances. Growth in connected capacity and traffic continued during 2021 and IX-as-a-Service found its way to more new customers in new geographies. The Digital Transformation program (the successor of ‘Fix the Basics’) continued, now not only delivering efficiency results internally but also providing an updated community portal to a first set of customers. New services and initiatives were developed, such as the Amsterdam Data Exchange (AMdEX), implementing AMS-IX’s neutrality and governance structure in areas adjacent to the traditional ‘IP interconnection’ activities.

A stable team

2021 was also a year of stabilization in the AMS-IX organization and Management Team. Ruben van de Brink joined in March, accepting the challenge of replacing CTO Hen Steenman - one of the founding fathers of AMS-IX – who retired in January 2021.

During the ongoing pandemic, the vast majority of the AMS-IX team continued to work at home. The AMS-IX Management Team took numerous well received measures to protect and keep engaging the team.

Recruiting and retaining talent is an ongoing challenge for any technology company these days, but we believe AMS-IX activities, culture (embracing diversity and inclusion) and brand, in combination with competitive employment conditions, will enable the AMS-IX team to thrive in the years ahead.

Our markets

In 2021, the IP interconnection market in the Netherlands continued to change, driven by factors such as continued steep price decline in alternative interconnection services (especially IP Transit), alternative locations growing as an interconnection hub (e.g. Marseille), consolidation in access networks (where large networks increasingly tend to avoid IXes) and concentration of content traffic into fewer than 10 content providers (driving migration from IX services to Private Network Interconnects – PNIs).

These trends bring threats as well as opportunities: high volume traffic streams between large players may move to PNIs, but upcoming new players (including enterprises and government organizations) see the value of a proven, trusted and neutral internet exchange to exchange traffic with their business partners – adding to the ‘long tail’ of connected parties and to the ecosystem. AMS-IX continues to be a key element in the Netherlands’ value as an international digital hub, where many global players decide to establish their cloud infrastructure.

Outside the Netherlands, we have seen healthy growth in opportunities to support organizations in establishing and managing an Internet Exchange in their country through the AMS-IX IX-as-a-Service offering. These activities will grow the scale of AMS-IX Development and Operations teams – enabling a lower cost base per exchange and more innovation on the long term – as well as contribute to a better internet in those geographies.

Build a better internet to contribute to a better society

In 2021 the AMS-IX vision was refined to “Build a better internet to contribute to a better society”. This sparked discussion regarding the extent to which AMS-IX should be concerned about the content exchanged through its IX-es and if (and how) AMS-IX should play an active role in fighting, for example, child pornography. To exchange best practices and align policies with those of related organizations, the AMS-IX Association joined EuroISPA, the Pan-European association of Internet Services Providers Associations (with a combined membership of over 2700 ISP’s and IX-es).

Looking ahead

I have great confidence in AMS-IX’ ability to create long term value for its members and other stakeholders. We have a seasoned and energetic management team, which is well aligned and has a constructive relationship with its employees and with the Board. We have a talented and enthusiastic pool of employees, a solid strategy, and healthy financials.

As we have seen in various growth and innovation initiatives, we should not underestimate the importance of AMS-IX’ neutrality and transparency, which have always been at the heart of AMS-IX. This really sets AMS-IX apart from other parties and enables us to move into markets where such a governance structure is of importance to build trust and acceptance. In all my dealings with the AMS-IX team, I fully recognize these values – which will contribute to driving our success in the future.

On behalf of the Board,
Bart J.R. van der Sloot

2021 in pictures

22 March
Four new Exchanges in India

Four new Exchanges in India

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8 April
10Tbit/s peak traffic in Amsterdam

10Tbit/s peak traffic in Amsterdam

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May to June
May to June – Moving the core

May to June – Moving the core

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13 July
New PoPs in Rotterdam and Naaldwijk

New PoPs in Rotterdam and Naaldwijk

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19 October
AMS-IX and HGC expand collaborations in the US

AMS-IX and HGC expand collaborations in the US

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10 November
Debate overview on encryption by OTT providers

Debate overview on encryption by OTT providers

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8 December
New 100 GE and 10 GE port fees for 2022

New 100 GE and 10 GE port fees for 2022

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Word from theCCO

2021 saw great progress in the digital transformation of AMS-IX. CCO Mike Baron explains what has been achieved by the Commercial Team in 2021 and what the plans are going forward into 2022.

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Mike Baron,

Senior Director Sales & Marketing

The driving force behind change in the peering market today comes from hyperscalers like Google, Meta, Amazon and Microsoft. Their investments in cloud, digital infrastructure and internet sea cables have a huge effect on the market. We see different effects in different areas of the world though. In the parts of the world with a well-developed connectivity market, we see market consolidation. Transit prices continue to go down and port prices for public peering are under pressure, which is a challenge for an Internet Exchange like AMS-IX. In markets with a lesser-developed internet there is a lot of market opportunity, especially in those markets where hyperscalers tend to invest. In these markets there is a growing demand for Internet Exchanges. Governments in these parts of the world amplify this demand as they take measures to make their country attractive as a regional digital hub. They want to be less depended on fossil fuel and ‘old’ industry and view digital as the new pillar of their economy.

As commercial department of AMS-IX, we have the challenge to act on these developments. We see a changing demand of our existing customers and new demand of new customers. At the beginning of 2021, the AMS-IX commercial department gave itself five strategic goals. We wanted to grow our ecosystem in Amsterdam. We wanted to grow our international footprint. We wanted to enhance our way of working. We wanted to optimise products and services. And we wanted to increase customer loyalty. All these goals are rooted in the AMS-IX general strategy of Innovate, Optimise and Grow.


In Amsterdam we achieved mixed results in 2021. Our platform in Amsterdam saw stable development with regards of the number of ASNs that we managed to connect (a little above 880 connected networks). At the same time though, the capacity of our connected customers in Amsterdam grew considerably. This was in a large part due to the new pricing strategy that we introduced at the end of 2020, giving volume-based discounts on port prices.

Next to commercial results, we also expanded the datacenter footprint of the Amsterdam Internet Exchange to the datacenters of Smartdc in Rotterdam and Greenhouse in Naaldwijk. This boosts the connectivity of the Rotterdam Metro, gives local ASNs access to the Internet Exchange and allows us to offer new products and services to a new clientele in the future. We have plans to expand the footprint of the Internet Exchange in Amsterdam also to other regions in the Netherlands coming years.

International growth

In terms of international growth, we can consider 2021 a building year. We did a lot of preparation work (also in terms of process) which will bear fruit during 2022 and beyond. An important change of strategy is that we have decided on a more pro-active course for our international expansion. We’re not only offering just IXaaS, but we are also looking to expand to regions ourselves when we feel we can contribute to the development of the internet in a positive manner.

We have a healthy pipeline for the launch of new Internet Exchanges in several spots of the world. In India we agreed with our partner Sify to launch new Internet Exchanges in Hyderabad, Kolkata, Nodia and Chennai. And at the end of 2020 we started a strategic partnership with Telecom Egypt to launch an Internet Exchange in Cairo. And we have intensified our partnership with HGC, also with the goal of setting up new Internet Exchanges in key strategic areas of the world.

Most of our existing international exchanges (Hong Kong, Mumbai, Curacao, Bay Area and Chicago) saw stable development with regards to the number of connected ASNs, with the exception of Manama-IX where our partner Batelco realised a lot of growth in 2021. An important change with regards to our existing Internet Exchanges is the fact that HGC has taken over the role of Epsilon as commercial partner for AMS-IX Chicago and AMS-IX Bay Area. Epsilon ended the partnership due to new strategic priorities on their part. With HGC onboard, we have a partner that has a similar growth strategy as us.


The AMS-IX commercial department spent a lot of effort in 2021 in developing AMS-IX.me, our new community portal that is set to replace my.AMS-IX. Although the new portal shows great promise, most of our customers still use my.AMS-IX, since AMS-IX.me doesn’t have all the functionality yet.

This is of course not an ideal situation as our support teams must work with two portals simultaneously. I’m therefore very proud that we managed to get excellent feedback in the 2021 customer survey, despite the digital transformation that we’re currently facing.

For 2022 we will continue to work on AMS-IX.me and we strive to migrate all our existing customers to the new portal. Due to our focus on AMS-IX.me, we made limited progress with regards to optimising our products and services and expanding our products and services portfolio. We made a plan though to bring more focus to product and service management and we expect the results of this in 2022.

Our marketing team also had to deal with a bit of a digital transformation last couple of years. The marketing team used to support the sales team during their visits to events, but the pandemic had changed this dynamic. Throughout 2021 we therefore hosted webinars with EURO-IX and visited virtual events. We invested significantly in digital marketing and transformed MORE-IP into a television show that you can enjoy from the comfort of your own home. The new format for the event was very well received by our partners, customers and members and we will surely take some of our learned digital marketing knowledge into the future as the pandemic slowly loosens its grip on event planners.


In 2021 AMS-IX helped to launch AMdEX. The AMdEX project is a cooperation between Surf, UvA, AMS-IX, deXes and Amsterdam Economic board with the goal of building a neutral infrastructure for fair and controlled exchange of data. We believe that there is a lot of demand for these kinds of services, and we are planning to experiment with a proof of concept for a data exchange for healthcare companies in 2022.

I would like to thank our members, customers, and partners for exchanging their internet traffic on our platforms and grow with us and continue to build a better internet. Last, I would like to give compliments to my commercial team. We navigated our way through two lockdowns and in the midst of a digital transformation. I’m proud on the results that we managed to achieve under these difficult circumstances. On to the future!

Mike Baron
Chief Commercial Officer

Word from the CTO

In March of 2021, Ruben van den Brink took over as CTO from Henk Steenman, one of the founding fathers of AMS-IX. Throughout the year, Ruben guided the technical team through a digital transformation process.

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Ruben van den Brink,


Peering will remain an essential part of the internet infrastructure, but we need to keep up with the world around us, invest wisely and expand our knowledge and expertise. This is one of the most important challenges that we face as an Internet Exchange, and this has an impact on technical department as well.

Last year, we have been working on our technology roadmap, based on a clear technology vision. To this end, we have mapped out our legacy and challenges. This way, we ensure that everyone at AMS-IX knows where the focus lies and where the dependencies between projects lie. As in previous years, the activities and projects of the technical department all revolve around the pillars ‘Growth’, ‘Innovation’ and ‘Optimisation’. Our resources were mainly invested in projects with the Optimisation label.

The platform in Amsterdam

We did of course many maintenance and optimisation projects for the platform in Amsterdam last year, but I think two projects were especially notable and have a big impact for the long term. The first project was an ongoing RFP for a new switch platform. Our current vendor is going to stop support for the line of switches that we currently use, so we were looking for a new solution.

When I started to work at AMS-IX the RFP for the new switches was already well underway. To make sure that the new equipment has the capabilities that we require, we had to test the hardware of multiple vendors extensively. The first proof of concept took two months, the second took six weeks. After a careful evaluation, we decided to go with Juniper. In 2022, we expect to start upgrading our platform with the new switches. Migration of the entire Amsterdam platform will take several years.

The other big project was the migration of one of our core nodes to a new location: Digital Realty AMS17, the data tower in the Amsterdam Science Park. The project was carefully planned in three phases. Phase one of this core migration was the most complex: moving the core switch from one datacentre to another, including all connectivity. That meant migrating and testing every single connection. The project was a difficult job, but the engineering team prepared everything extremely well and managed to carry it out flawlessly without any downtime. A truly great success for which I would like to offer my praises to the team.

Software development

AMS-IX is currently working on several automation projects, most notably the development of a new community portal called AMS-IX.me that we are building in Salesforce. In 2021, we made some improvements in the way we have organised our software development which in the end helped us to develop, test, and deliver software more quickly. First of all, we improved our Scrum and Agile skills. Investing in these capabilities, in which Magdalena played a big part, resulted in far more efficient operation of the team and greater autonomy. Performance has significantly improved because of these efforts. Whereas two years ago we deployed one or two releases, last year there were five. We are also seeing that the rest of AMS-IX organises itself more easily around this approach. The creation of stories has improved, our backlog is continuously refined and therefore developed in a more reliable way.

Also, there has been really good progress in the software development team. We are working with Codetribe developers from Serbia, with a dedicated product owner from AMS-IX, which keeps the speed up. In total, there are now three Scrum teams that coordinate their activities so that developments around Salesforce and the technology reinforce each other.


The projects described above are largely related to optimisation, but we’ve also been working on several innovation projects. For example, we are participating in the Route Server Support Foundation (RSFF), the aim of which is to develop a new, scalable route server that can be used by large internet exchanges.

The other participating internet exchanges are DE-CIX in Frankfurt, LINX in London and Netnod in Sweden. Together, we are promoting open standards and greater diversity in route server software, which is essential for the functioning of the internet. In this way, we hope to reduce dependence on a limited number of route servers. The project is going well, and the OpenBGPD software (open source) has become available to us to start testing.

We also continued to work on IX-API, which provides an interface for provisioning services at Internet Exchanges. This supports end-to-end automated processes and enables networks to configure, change and cancel services at IX’s. Version 1 is currently live and version 2 is going into production. We’re also preparing specifications for version 3, which will focus on providing monitoring and statistics.

Finally, AMS-IX, together with University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam Economic Board, SURF, Waag and deXes, is currently participating as one of the founding partners of the AMdEX project. AMdEX was launched in April of 2021 with the goal to build a neutral infrastructure that facilitates the exchange of data in a way that is consistent with the wishes of the data owner. AMdEX aims to give the data owner control over how data is used and monetized. AMS-IX has the role of secretary of the project and plays an important role in setting up partnerships. In 2021 several usecases for the AMdEX project were worked out in detail. In 2022 the AMdEX team wants to translate the defined architectures of the usecases into actual workable proof of concepts.

Looking ahead

In 2022 and beyond, we will continue to improve our agility. We will continue to engage with stakeholders and execute our technology roadmap. We think it is important to become the leading exchange of a responsible internet. This means we not only want to be big in terms of peak traffic, but also address the important challenges our society is facing as a result of digitization, like online safety and sustainability. For this, we are open to collaborate with many different partners. As an independent exchange, we’re ready to take up our role in this exciting emerging landscape, for the good of the internet. As I like to say:

"Be the exchange you want to see in this world!"

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