European cloud and infrastructure providers launch Structura-X initiative // Concrete implementation of Gaia-X compatible services
Frankfurt am Main (Germany), 22 December 2021: Around 20 European cloud and infrastructure providers, including DE-CIX, the world's leading Internet Exchange operator, have launched a new initiative to build joint Gaia-X-compliant infrastructure services. The Structura-X lighthouse project complements the existing industry-specific lighthouse initiatives for the automotive sector (Catena-X), the agricultural sector (AgriGaia) and the financial sector (EuroDaT). The first offerings resulting from the Structura-X project are expected in the middle of next year.
The initiative emerged out of this year's Gaia-X Summit in November. There, the then German Federal Minister of Economics, Peter Altmaier, called for the development of a Gaia-X-compatible infrastructure in Europe to complement industry-specific services. In coordination with the Gaia-X AISBL, the common objective was initially agreed upon by seven European providers:
- Deutsche Telekom
Since then, additional companies* from across Europe have joined the initiative. The common goal of the members is to form an ecosystem for European data sovereignty based on their existing infrastructure. To this end, an overarching European cloud infrastructure will be created, enabling users to test and roll out services and data spaces in a Gaia-X-compliant infrastructure.
DE-CIX, which plays home to the largest interconnection ecosystem in the world, is contributing its competence in the automation of interconnection, among other things. This means that interconnection services can be simply and automatically booked and scaled both via API and through self-service portals, similar to the well-known cloud providers. This is made possible because large parts of the infrastructure are virtualized. With this flexibility, companies can react dynamically to market developments.
Dr. Thomas King, CTO at DE-CIX, explains: “The digital economy requires a highly secure, flexible and adaptive network infrastructure with low latencies and interoperability between the different providers. Gaia-X and initiatives like Structura-X will support European companies to achieve sovereignty and control over their data – without the risk of vendor lock-in.”
Structura-X will work closely with the Gaia-X AISBL, which, among other things, stipulates the technical framework for data sovereignty. At the same time, Structura-X will create the necessary reach and scale for new cross-industry and cross-border collaboration in the cloud, thus counteracting fragmentation of the European cloud market.
*Other Structura-X members are: AssoSoftware, Citynetwork, CS Group, CSI, Ebrc, Fabasoft, KPN, Next Layer, Opennebula, OSISM, OVH, ThreeFold Tech, and United Group.