Equinix, a pioneering operator of Internet business exchanges, will announce layoffs – but no data center closures – later on this month.
Several employees received unexpected pink slips last week, the first wave of layoffs in the data center operators history. Equinix differentiates its facilities and services from other carrier-neutral facilities by pursuing the business exchange model, where companies buy colocation and cross-connects not because of the quality of the data center itself, but because of the perceived value of interconnecting with other businesses there.
However, other carrier-neutral players have hit a business slowdown. Colo.com recently filed for Chapter 11 reorganization, and numerous other data center operators have announced layoffs and data center closings, including Verio NTT Communications.
While Equinix executives expect to talk about layoffs in greater detail while reporting on third-quarter earnings during the week of Oct. 15, a company spokesman said no data center closings are planned.
“Equinix is not closing any of its IBX [Internet business exchange] centers, and the reduction will not impact services, as most of the cuts are outside of the customer support divisions,” said David Fonkalsrud, an Equinix spokesman. “In fact, Equinix is currently building its seventh IBX center, located in the greater New York area, and expects to open that center for business by the end of the year.”
Since Equinixs IPO in August 2000, the companys shares have steadily slid from the offering price of $12 to 45 cents before the market open today. Initially funded with $12 million from Benchmark Capital, Cisco Systems, Microsoft and Stanford University, Equinix raised $280 million by the time of its IPO from AOL, E*Trade Group, Netscape Communications and Loudcloud founder Marc Andreessen. Equinix raised $240 million through its IPO.