KickStart Europe: launch for the European digital infrastructure sector
Nearly 300 international decision makers, developers, investors, designers and builders from the digital infrastructure sector are now ready for 2018 as they gained fresh insights and inspiration. The first Kickstart Europe event on January 24 in Amsterdam RAI proved to be their kickstart for yet another challenging year in IT.
"The idea behind this conference was to organise a strategy event at the beginning of the year - to prepare the entire market for the new year to come", said Stijn Grove, Managing Director of KickStart Europe and Digital Gateway to Europe. In the end, the gusto for this event was twice as high as expected. The event even welcomed over 100 CEOs and many other C-level executives from 15 countries.
Trends & Outlooks 2018
As announced, the event was packed with the latest trends, technology, infrastructure and investments in the digital market. David Hybels, for example, opened his Global Director Solutions Marketing of Vertiv with a keynote about the five data center trends of 2018. One of the trends he addressed was that hyperscalers will continue to use colocation services to keep up with demand.
With the expected growth in the near future in mind, the ever growing “demand for data” was a recurring theme during the conference. How can the industry keep up with this demand?
CBRE's Mitul Patel, Head of EMEA Data Center Research, presented his forecasts for 2018 in an outlook for the European data center market, and analyzed the hot and emerging data center markets Milan, Madrid and the Nordics.
Gregor Petri, Research Vice President of Gartner, gave his predictions for the cloud market in Europe, predicting that 90 percent of companies in developed countries will use cloud services by 2020. Alfonso Aranda Arias, Head of Global Data Center Operations of IBM, closed the first part of the day with a practical-philosophical keynote about the mindset within the data center sector – which can learn from integrating design and operations, as used in other IT sectors.
With inspiring and enlightening panel sessions on topics like green IT, finance & investments, connectivity, customer demand, and European data center growth, there was something for everybody. More than once the crowd got involved in the discussions on stage. Several panel members called for collaboration to keep up with the market’s growth. Monika Grass did so for sustainability in IT and Paul Ike, Managing Director of Unica Fastcom, talked about internet as the new grid, comparable to that of energy. By innovating together, it will be possible for data centers, internet exchanges and other digital infrastructure parties to keep up with the growing demand.
These calls were heeded in a massive way. Over 300 meeting were planned during the day: there were plenty network opportunities to bring people from the European industry together.
KickStart Europe 2019
Participants today are now a step ahead with the latest knowledge about trends in technology, infrastructure and investments in the Netherlands and the EU - which lays the foundation for a new edition of KickStart Europe in 2019.
Managing Director Stijn Grove: “I’m very pleased with the outcome of this event, it was better than expected. Today really was about the European digital infrastructure industry, not just the Dutch one. We’re here to share. The digital economy is the economy, so it concerns us all. Which means there’s still a lot to do, so next year we will definitely be back.”
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