Co-opetition: Collaborating Beyond Four Walls

Ilissa MillerBy: Ilissa Miller, CEO, iMiller Public Relations and Advisory Council Member, Host in Ireland

In marketing, there is a phenomenon that sometimes occurs in which competitors cooperate with one another in order to progress forward within an industry.  We call this type of unconventional collaboration, “co-opetition”.  With a mission to educate the general marketplace on Ireland’s available hosting benefits, Host in Ireland has seized the opportunity to expand its limits of collaboration, carving a brand new path to achieve its goals and objectives.

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Host in Ireland Supports the ITLG/Irish Times Silicon Valley Global Awards

Host in Ireland is pleased to support and work alongside fellow organizations that are also dedicated to promoting technology initiatives connected to Ireland.  This includes the upcoming ITLG/Irish Times Silicon Valley Global Awards, to be held in Stanford, CA on October 8, 2014.  This VIP event will feature ITLG Chairman Dr. Craig R. Barrett, who will discuss the state of technology today with top Irish and Irish-American technology leaders in Silicon Valley and present ITLG’s Silicon Valley Global Awards to some of the most prestigious and significant influencers in the Irish technology market. “As an influential presence amongst the Irish technology community, we here at Host in Ireland look forward to supporting ITLG as a sponsor of this event as well as going into 2015,” explains Garry Connolly, President, Host in Ireland.  “As organizations with a common goal to educate the technology community on the benefits of investing into Ireland, we continue to share our message with ITLG of Ireland being an optimum location for US companies to consider hosting their digital assets.” Garry Connolly will be joined by a number of partner companies to represent Host in Ireland in Stanford on October 8.  Here they will continue to provide U.S.-based companies with the timely and accurate information they need to consider Ireland as an ideal hosting location. Host in Ireland’s mission is to educate global companies on Ireland’s business benefits, including: its strong public policy; economic and political stability; highly skilled and affordable workforce; established pedigree of leading companies that have hosted digital assets in Ireland for over five decades; ample worldwide connectivity; and renewable and affordable energy resources. Founded seven years ago, ITLG has committed to bridge the connection between Ireland and the Silicon Valley. “We are delighted to welcome Host in Ireland as a sponsor of our awards event and look forward to the awareness and benefits our mutual support will generate in the Irish-American technology community,” said John Hartnett, President and Founder of ITLG. To learn more about the Host in Ireland, visit www.hostinireland.com or email hostinireland@imillerpr.com. To learn more about the ITLG/Irish Times Silicon Valley Global Awards, click here.

Host in Ireland Celebrates Digital Realty’s Newest Data Center in Dublin: Digital Profile Park

By: Garry Connolly, President, Host in Ireland Host in Ireland is celebrating Digital Realty’s first Tier III data center in Dublin at Digital Profile Park this week!  The data center launch marks yet another momentous, strategic addition to Ireland’s data center portfolio, reaffirming its place as a principal international location for hosting your digital assets. HII Celebrates Digital Realty's Newest DC Why Ireland for Digital Realty? Representing the most important aspects of digital hosting in Ireland are Host in Ireland’s “5 Ps”: Policy, People, Pedigree, Pipes and Power.  Companies like Digital Realty recognize the advantage of the integration of these five key elements, which provides a structured foundation for companies of all sizes and markets to consider Ireland as a location to host their digital assets.  Additionally, the 5 Ps enable Ireland to offer companies the support they need when hosting their digital assets in the EMEA region, while simultaneously meeting their customers’ needs.  Over the past decade, these 5 Ps have enabled Ireland to emerge as the favored location for some of the world’s most successful companies to host their digital assets, offering an array of financial benefits, an extensive fiber footprint and a highly skilled workforce. Tied directly into Host in Ireland’s 5 Ps, Digital Realty’s blog in May discusses why the company considered Dublin as a data center location, “Beyond satisfying client demand, Digital Realty’s recent investment in Ireland is helping to attract global players to Ireland and—we hope—to further establish it as a European hotbed for the industry.” Additionally, Digital Realty names the following on why Dublin is part of its data center footprint: - Easy access: approximately 15 miles southwest of Dublin International Airport; - Ideal climate for deploying an indirect air optimization design — significantly improving data center energy efficiency by lowering its PUE (power utilization efficiency) and therefore, its total cost of occupancy; - World-class fiber provisioning; and - Attractive fiscal and legal structures in Ireland. About Digital Profile Park in Dublin Located within ‘Ireland’s Datacenter Cluster’ and currently one of the most active locations in the European data center marketplace, Digital Realty’s Digital Profile Park data center in Dublin yields amazing benefits including: - Four state-of-the-art buildings, totaling approximately 193,000 square feet of space with a total IT capacity of over 15 MW; - Approximately 8,000 square meters (over 86,000 square feet) of net technical space; - Each suite can support up to 2 MW of IT load - Maximum capability for product flexibility with state-of-the-art power, cooling, connectivity and system redundancy; - Ireland's first Uptime Institute Tier III Certified Data Center; - Eco-friendly ‘Free Air Cooling’; - Low PUE rating of 1.15; and - Access to over 500 million people in the European market - maintaining strong links to the U.S. - truly serving as a ‘Gateway into Europe’. To learn more about Digital Realty’s newest data center in Dublin, Ireland, visit http://demand.digitalrealty.com/digitalprofilepark-furtherinformationpage/. To learn more about Host in Ireland, go to: www.hostinireland.com.

GUEST BLOG: Looking beyond the Pipes: The Data Protection Perspective on Hosting in Ireland

By Daragh O Brien Ireland has successfully positioned itself as a destination of choice for organisations looking for operational IT bases. A myriad of reasons can be cited for this success, ranging from the data-centre friendly climate, to the skill level of our workforce, and the excellent government supports for businesses. Increasingly, however, organisations will need to factor compliance with EU data protection laws into the equation, and Ireland has some potentially valuable advantages for organisations to consider. This is particularly true when we start to think beyond the tech that is used to store and host data and consider the implications for the data itself of where it is housed. Ireland has four potential areas of advantage to consider.
  1. Pragmatic Regulatory Environment
While critics sometimes rail against the “light touch” regulatory regime in Ireland, in practice the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner operates in a pragmatic manner to help organisations develop and implement practices, policies, and procedures for processing that meet the requirements of the data protection legislation in Europe. The outgoing Data Protection Commissioner, Billy Hawkes, has commented on a number of occasions over the past few years that Ireland needed to learn from, and has learned from, weaknesses in the Regulatory approach that existed in the Irish Financial Services sector. In that context, the “guiding hand” approach that exists should not be confused with a “light touch.” Prosecutions do take place, and with the increase in potential penalties under the EU data protection regulation, and a new Data Protection Commissioner being appointed in the coming weeks, it is likely that prosecutions may become more frequent. However, organisations that engage early with the Office of the Commissioner and actively and continually seek to implement appropriate standards of technical and organisation controls to ensure that the security and privacy of personal data under their control is protected will likely find day-to-day interactions with the Office of the Data Protection Commissioner to be pragmatic. The forthcoming opening of a satellite office for the Office of the Commissioner in Dublin will be a further benefit to organisations looking to host their data in Ireland.
  1. Political Priority
A significant feature of Ireland’s positioning on data protection now is that the government recently appointed a Junior Minister with responsibility for data protection, Dara Murphy. This ministry spans two key government departments, the Taoiseach (Prime Minister) and Foreign Affairs. While only appointed a few weeks, Minister Murphy has already indicated that his office will be closely watching the developments in the legal action against Microsoft seeking to compel disclosure to U.S. authorities of data held by Microsoft in its Dublin Data Centre. Data protection is now seen in government as a priority area for Ireland, and an area where the responsible Minister himself feels that there “is an absence of sufficient protection and legislation”.  This, combined with the fact that the Irish Data Protection Commissioner received increased funding and resources over the past few years, at a time when the rest of the public sector was undergoing cutbacks, sends a clear message of the political commitment to ensuring an effective data protection regime in Ireland that strikes an appropriate balance between a myriad of competing rights, duties, and legitimate interests.
  1. Wider Political and Regulatory Context
Data centre investments are large capital projects. Therefore, it is necessary to be sure of the regulatory frameworks that might affect the operation of your data centre. Ireland is a politically stable member of the EU and, as a result, will implement the EU data protection regulation when it is finally adopted. Other jurisdictions which might be potential candidates for data centre investment have open questions about their continued future involvement in the EU and their approach to fundamental rights related to data. The UK has a promised ‘in or out’ referendum on their membership of the EU and this could affect the legal status of data processed in the UK in the future. Add to this the uncertainty surrounding the future status of Scotland with its forthcoming referendum on independence. Scotland would have to reapply for membership of the EU, which would require a change to EU treaties, and which may require consensus to be reached by existing EU member states before Scotland could join the EU as a sovereign nation. There is a risk therefore, depending on how citizens of Scotland and the rest of the UK vote in two forthcoming referendums, any data centre investment in the UK or locating data in Scotland could, almost overnight, cease to have the certainty of a common legal framework for data protection as other EU member states. For organisations wanting a foothold for their organisations in the UK, but the certainty of having their data hosted in an EU member state, the island of Ireland provides a flexible solution, with data being hosted in the Republic and other functions being performed in Northern Ireland. This could give organisations a “best of both worlds” and hedge the risks associated with the UK’s ‘love/hate’ relationship with the EU.
  1. People and Skills
Over the past few years, there has been a growing realisation that data protection is about more than just legalese and contractual terms. There is a need to be able to understand and envision the application of data and data processing to the challenges of business and society. There is also a need for data protection advisors to organisations to be able to understand information flows and the principles and practices of disciplines such as data governance and information security to help design and implement appropriate solutions that serve customers effectively. There is a small but growing pool of qualified data protection specialists in Ireland, and not just from a legal perspective. As a result of the development of professional certifications in data protection practice by organisations such as the Law Society of Ireland (Disclosure: I contributed to the development of this course and lecture on it.), people from a range of disciplines have developed an in-depth practical knowledge of data protection law and practice, and how it relates to other information management disciplines such as data governance. In addition, there are a number of firms in Ireland who offer practical and pragmatic data protection advisory services, drawing together skills in IT project management, risk management, systems development, data governance, and data protection. These firms can work with organisations looking to host in Ireland to conduct appropriate privacy impact assessments, identify key risks, and connect organisations with suppliers who can help ensure successful and compliant implementations. Organisations that host in Ireland can be assured of finding appropriate practical project assistance at competitive prices from specialist firms. And, should organisations looking to host data in Ireland express a demand for clear and validated certifications, the Irish, third- and fourth-level education sectors, as well as the vocational and professional training sector, are capable of producing world leading certification and qualifications to meet demand. Conclusion Over the years, Ireland has attracted technology investment successfully. Increasingly data is being seen as a key commodity sector with potentially significant value to the Irish economy. As a nation, we have learned first-hand the problems that can be caused by an inappropriate regulatory regime and it is clear our government and our Data Protection Regulator are committed to avoiding a repeat of past crises in the data space. Ireland’s unique exposure to the cutting-edge challenges of having the EU or EMEA headquarters of the largest data businesses in the world in a number of our cities (not just Dublin, but Cork and Galway as well), with significant numbers of staff employed in these locations, means our Regulator has had to learn how to fight Goliath-sized battles with a David-sized budget. This has meant a more pragmatic and often collaborative approach has developed. Our exposure to the data economy means data protection is a priority issue in our government, with a renewed clarity of emphasis on the topic with a ministerial appointment in recent weeks. Data protection is also being seen as an important area to establish credible qualifications and credentials in by a number of professional bodies (including the Law Society and the Irish Computer Society). Host in Ireland uses a “5 Ps” model to describe the factors which need to be considered when investing in Data Centre locations. Ireland has developed, and continues to improve, competencies in the policy and people components of the 5 Ps model, to complement our strengths in the other areas. Why not come and talk to us to see how we can help host your data! Daragh O Brien is the founder of Castlebridge Associates, an outcomes-oriented company providing coaching, consulting, mentoring, and project management services to organisations struggling with information quality challenges, data governance difficulties, data protection compliance issues and information strategies.

What Are Industry Leaders Saying about IDA Ireland?

By: Host in Ireland 6/30/14 When expanding into a new territory, the first question is typically “where do I start?”  IDA Ireland, headquartered in Dublin, assists foreign investment companies in identifying those next steps to ensure successful foreign development. As Host in Ireland continues to drive home its message of the “5 Ps” (policy, people, pedigree, pipes, and power), it is clear that IDA Ireland exemplifies the superior quality of the people and service you’ll find when hosting assets in Ireland. Responsible for the attraction and development of foreign investment via funding and grant programs, IDA also increases awareness of the benefits of hosting in Ireland, while attracting new businesses. In this recent video featuring multiple global business leaders, it becomes clear that IDA Ireland is an indispensable asset to each company expanding its business in the country, and for some - a major factor in the decision to choose Ireland as their preferred expansion location.  Describing IDA with words like “welcoming” and “hospitable”, to “streamlined” and “experienced”, each interviewee shared his or her positive experiences with IDA Ireland. IDA Ireland has the ability to offer foreign investors assistance in information and statistics, introductions to potential investors, advice on property solutions, and more.  With more than 60 high-growth companies having entered the market via IDA’s assistance, it is widely considered as an institution of unparalleled superiority. The opportunity to work with IDA Ireland gives those utilizing Host in Ireland a unique advantage while entering the market of digital assets hosting in Ireland.  With timely and accurate information from Host in Ireland and its collective sponsors, as well as knowledge of IDA Ireland’s support of the initiative, investors can be assured in their decision to host digital assets in Ireland is sound. To view IDA Ireland’s video, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nbraPAPYEn0&feature=youtu.be. To learn more about Host in Ireland, visit http://www.hostinireland.com.

Zayo Acquires Geo Networks, Expanding Its Fiber Footprint into Europe and Ireland

(as posted on Data Center Post on June 10, 2014)  by Laurie Samper, Technical Writer As Ireland continues to grow as a strategic hub for hosting digital assets, companies are looking for opportunities to take advantage of growth into this region to provide premium services to their customers.  Industry leader Zayo is no exception, making great strides into harnessing the potential of Ireland as an international hub, evident through its acquisition of Geo Networks on May 16, 2014. Zayo, a leading international provider of bandwidth infrastructure based in Colorado, provides a full suite of lit services and dark fiber products to wireline and wireless customers, data centers, Internet content providers, high-bandwidth enterprises and government agencies around the world.  Looking to harness the power of hosting in the European region, the company recently acquired Geo Networks, a revolutionary London-based company focused solely on the design, build, and operation of bespoke dedicated fiber network solutions. So, what’s in it for Zayo?  The acquisition allows the provider to expand into Europe with a significant fiber footprint connecting companies to end-users in the EMEA region.  Providing Zayo with over 1,800 additional miles of national fiber connecting 130 data centers, telehouses and key Internet exchanges, acquiring Geo Networks was strategic move to significantly expand its European presence.  As Ireland continues development as a digital hosting powerhouse, Zayo realizes the importance of harnessing that potential through direct access via the East-West Ring - which provides diverse connectivity to Dublin. Dan Caruso, CEO of Zayo Group, reaffirmed Dublin’s value in a recent press release, stating “… diverse connectivity to Dublin is critical as it continues to develop as an international data center hub.” As Irish digital hosting continues to expand, industry leaders such as Zayo are seeking a stable outlet to provide connectivity to this rapidly developing region.  Assisting in this continued expansion, Host in Ireland was recognized by Geo Networks as a key player in generating new development.  Acquiring Geo now provides Zayo with the opportunity to harness the vast array of benefits Ireland has to offer customers, opening the door to unique opportunities for an enhanced end-user experience. To learn more, read the full press release here.

Forbes Names Ireland Best Country in the World for Business

by Laurie Samper, Technical Writer June 6, 2014  Don’t just take our word for it, it’s now official – Forbes has ranked Ireland #1 in its eighth annual ranking of Best Countries for Business, followed by New Zealand, Hong Kong, Denmark and Sweden.  As the number one country for foreign direct investment, the timing has never been better to host your digital assets in Ireland.  In the world of business, Ireland is king. How has Ireland earn the coveted number one stop?  Despite recent worldwide economic crisis, Ireland remains an extremely pro-business environment, attracting investment by some of the world’s biggest companies over the past decade.  According to the American Chamber of Commerce in Ireland, U.S. firms invested $129.5 billion in Ireland from 2008-2012; more than the previous 58 years combined.  This makes the country the fourth largest recipient of U.S. foreign direct investment last year, attracting nearly as much investment as all of developing Asia.  Couple all of this with a booming stock market and affordable, educated labor, and you’ll see why Ireland boasts the recipe for success. Forbes determined Ireland’s #1 ranking by assessing 11 different, equally weighted factors including property rights, innovation, taxes, technology, corruption, freedom (personal, trade, and monetary), red tape, investor protection, and stock market performance.  Of the 14 nations reviewed, Ireland was the only country that ranked among the top 15% of every single metric; it scored near the very top for low tax burden, investor protection, and personal freedom.  Businesses are also drawn by the 12.5% corporate tax rate - one of the lowest in Europe.  Anglophone companies also benefit from the common language factor. Over 1,000 overseas companies maintain a presence in Ireland, employing 150,000 of the nation’s 1.9 million workers.  As the EMEA home for many U.S. tech giants including Google, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, Ireland is continuing its upward trend, developing opportunities for all forms of foreign direct investment - especially digital assets hosting.  With the help of the Host in Ireland initiative, companies large and small now have access to timely and accurate information about how hosting in Ireland can easily expand their business into the best country in the world. Host in Ireland is an industry-led marketing initiative that provides timely and accurate information on Ireland’s digital asset hosting ecosystem at all times including demonstrating why Ireland is more cost effective, efficient, reliable, secure and accessible than most other regions across the EU. To read the full article by Forbes, click here. To learn more about the Host in Ireland initiative, visit www.hostinireland.com.

The Foundation of Host in Ireland: The Power of the 5 Ps

(as posted on Data Center Post on June 5, 2014) by Garry Connolly, President of Host in Ireland When considering hosting digital assets abroad, first things first – you need to get your priorities straight. With so many details to consider it’s easy to get lost in the process. Lucky for you, Host in Ireland has developed a formula that identifies precisely what is most important to companies when deciding on a location to host digital assets securely and successfully. We call this approach – the 5 Ps: Policy, People, Pedigree, Pipes and Power. This short alliteration is key in determining a prime location for your company to host your digital assets.  Powered by this approach, Host in Ireland aims to educate and amplify the superior benefits Ireland has to offer U.S. clients seeking to host their digital assets in the EMEA region. Through the support of its sponsors and the power of the collective, Host in Ireland has the ability to steer decision makers in the right direction to ensure successful global expansion of companies utilizing and leveraging digital assets. Embodying the essence of success in these five categories, a recent report conducted by 451 Research Group pegs Ireland as a prime European location for hosting capabilities on par with London, Paris, Frankfurt and Amsterdam.  Offering companies affordable power and renewable energy; ample connectivity to Europe and America; redundant network and bandwidth capacity; various data center providers offering a multitude of services; fiscal benefits and a skilled workforce; along with an attractive business management structure implemented by Ireland, which has been pro-business and home to U.S. clients for decades, Ireland is the obvious choice for companies looking to expand globally through Europe. Security is pivotal when hosting digital assets abroad and Ireland has the unique ability to offer exceptional data protection in a politically and economically stable region. With a low corporate tax rate, elimination of double taxation, and affordable labor and energy costs, Ireland is able to provide organizations with the opportunity to cost-effectively host their assets in a region with superior connectivity to Europe and the Americas. Home to top tier technology companies like Microsoft, eBay, Amazon for over five decades, Ireland has enabled an array of U.S. companies to successfully host their digital content and services abroad. Effective and affordable, Host in Ireland opens the opportunity for global expansion to companies of all sizes and disciplines by providing timely and accurate information on Ireland’s technology ecosystem. To learn more about how the 5Ps support the Host in Ireland initiative, download the 451 Research report for free.