Privacy Focus Leads Benelux Firms to Sovereign Cloud

Region’s distinctive needs and regulatory environments also boost hybrid clouds, sustainable providers and localization, ISG Provider Lens

Enterprises in the Benelux region are increasingly pursuing sovereign clouds and sustainable cloud services, according to a new research report published today by Information Services Group (ISG)  a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

The 2022 ISG Provider Lens Next-Gen Private/Hybrid Cloud — Data Center Services & Solutions report for Benelux finds that despite marked differences in their economies and regulatory environments, Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxembourg have some common traits in terms of private/hybrid cloud trends.

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“Like the European Union as a whole, Benelux is a dynamic market,” said Ola Chowning, partner, ISG North Europe. “Its fast networks and highly qualified workforce attract many cloud service providers.”

Sovereign cloud services, which can help enterprises meet security and privacy rules from the EU and some national governments, are gaining traction throughout the Benelux region, the report says. The area’s unique industrial landscape and highly regulated financial sectors have increased demand for data protection. ISG expects a significant increase in sovereign cloud use cases, especially in the Netherlands, with its high concentration of companies in critical industries that emphasize data security.

Across the Benelux region, many large and midsize enterprises also are adopting hybrid cloud environments that include both private clouds and best-of-breed services from public clouds, ISG says. To reduce time to market, clients often prefer service providers that have deep partnerships with hyperscalers and can automate multi-cloud orchestration.

The Netherlands ranks higher than Belgium and Luxembourg in digital transformation, based on the size and number of engagements between enterprises and service providers, the report says. The country’s more lenient interpretation of EU regulations has attracted at least 200 British firms since 2016. Its Amsterdam Internet Exchange (AMS-IX), one of the world’s largest, draws many data center operators and hyperscalers.

Luxembourg, the region’s financial center and a hub for many multinationals, is highly regulated and difficult for providers to enter, the report says. A local presence is required, so many data center operators partner with local players. Belgium is less tightly regulated but has a close-knit networking community that can disadvantage outside service providers, ISG says.

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The report also highlights other trends in the region, including data center industry consolidation and the emergence of facilities in smaller cities, which could speed up development of edge computing applications.

The 2022 ISG Provider Lens™ Next-Gen Private/Hybrid Cloud — Data Center Services & Solutions report for Benelux evaluates the capabilities of 48 providers across four quadrants: Managed Services for Large Accounts, Managed Services for Midmarket, Managed Hosting, and Colocation Services.

The report names Accenture, Atos, Kyndryl and Sopra Steria as Leaders in two quadrants each. It names Capgemini, Cloudreach, Interxion (Digital Realty), Equinix, NorthC and TCS as Leaders in one quadrant each.

In addition, Axians and Sopra Steria are named as Rising Stars — companies with a “promising portfolio” and “high future potential” by ISG’s definition — in one quadrant each.

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