The London Internet Exchange (LINX), a global provider of interconnection services, has launched its latest venture, LINX Nairobi, in Kenya’s capital. This new Internet Exchange Point (IXP) would signify a milestone in East Africa’s digital landscape, offering enhanced connectivity and a robust digital ecosystem.
Kenya, recognized as a technological hub in Africa, has been experiencing a digital transformation since the early 2000s. The country would boast an impressive annual growth rate of 10.8% since 2016, cementing its status as a leader in tech innovation. Strategically located to serve the entire East African region, Kenya’s burgeoning fiber connectivity and access to a well-connected submarine cable network would provide vital links to Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.
The launch of LINX Nairobi is anticipated to strengthen Kenya’s rapidly evolving tech ecosystem with future-proof solutions.
Nurani Nimpuno, Head of Global Engagement for LINX, who spearheaded the LINX Nairobi project, expressed immense pride in this new venture. Nimpuno highlighted Kenya’s pioneering efforts in digital finance, notably its adoption of M-PESA with Safaricom, as a testament to the country’s technological advancements. “LINX Nairobi will complement and foster continued growth in Kenya’s tech ecosystem,” said Nurani Nimpuno.
LINX’s philosophy of collaboration has been evident in the preparation for LINX Nairobi, with significant engagement with local stakeholders in Kenya. The interconnection hub, a multi-site platform, is accessible from various data centers, including IXAfrica, Africa Data Centres NBO1, and iColo NBO1. This setup would allow networks in these facilities to connect to the LINX Nairobi hub and manage their traffic more efficiently.
Kenya Digital Superhighway Project
Network peering, a key feature of the hub, would offer networks enhanced control over their traffic flow, often proving to be a cost-effective and latency-reducing strategy. LINX Nairobi’s technical setup includes partnerships with notable companies like Nokia, which provides its 7220 IXR D3L and SR Linux Network Operating System (NOS) for a scalable solution. Other partners like Smartoptics and Flexoptics complete the technical framework.
The timing for LINX Nairobi is opportune, coinciding with Kenya’s government-led initiatives to advance digital services, such as the Kenya Digital Superhighway Project. This project aims to expand fiber network coverage and establish ‘smart hubs’ in rural areas, dovetailing with LINX‘s mission to enhance internet connectivity.
LINX has been a network peering pioneer for nearly three decades, transforming the Internet and connectivity landscape in the UK and beyond. Their commitment to improving Internet services in Kenya is evident as they introduce network peering solutions here and plan to expand interconnection services. In addition to marking a substantial technological advance for Kenya, this LINX effort would solidify Kenya’s standing as an African digital leader, ready for continued expansion and innovation in the fields of internet connection and digital services.