News Release

Colt Takes Network Innovation to New Heights with a 400G-Capable Routed Optical Networking Solution on its IQ Network

News Summary: Colt is further future-proofing its global IQ
May 26, 2021

News Summary:

  • Colt is further future-proofing its global IQ Network with the Cisco 8000 router series powered by Cisco Silicon One, Segment Routing MPLS, and Acacia 400G OpenZR+ technology
  • Cisco 8000 and Acacia 400G Open ZR+ technology provide a simpler and more scalable architecture that delivers cost efficiency with reduced space and power usage
  • These Cisco technologies within the IQ Network will help Colt address the exponential increase in demand for high bandwidth services from its customers

LONDON, UK, May 27, 2021Colt Technology Services, a leading provider of high bandwidth and on-demand connectivity, announced today that it is transforming its global IQ Network through the deployment of Cisco’s cutting-edge Cisco 8000 hardware alongside 400G OpenZR+ pluggable coherent technology and Segment Routing MPLS throughout the network, moving towards Cisco’s Routed Optical Networking solution.

This multi-faceted development sees Colt leverage an industry-leading combination of hardware and software innovation with 400G capability to provide enriched high bandwidth and software-defined connectivity for its customers globally. As part of this initiative, Colt is leading the industry in the trial and adoption of Acacia’s 400G OpenZR+ technology for long-haul inter-metro connections that are greater than 200km.

Since the IQ Network launch in 2016, Colt has continued to drive innovation in next-generation networking through an extensive investment programme, testing and deployment of leading-edge technologies. Today, the IQ Network connects over 900 data centres across Europe, Asia and North America’s largest business hubs, with over 29,000 on net buildings and growing.

Building a strategic partnership since 2019, Colt has been working closely with Cisco to optimise and evolve the IQ Network from 100G to 400G. This is to ensure Colt can address the exponential increase in demand for high bandwidth services from its customers and remain ready to power organisations’ digital transformations across the world.

Cisco’s 8000 hardware combined with Acacia’s 400G OpenZR+ pluggable coherent optic converges IP and optical networking layers for a simpler and more scalable architecture that delivers cost efficiency and reduces space and power usage in data centres and colocations. Segment Routing MPLS offers software capabilities which further simplify the network and provide fine-grained control for supporting stringent SLAs. With the combination of these Cisco technologies within the IQ Network, Colt will deliver high-bandwidth and software-defined networking that meets connectivity demands of today and the future.

“Colt is committed to ensuring its network is at the forefront of technological innovation, and this latest investment is the next step in our network optimisation strategy, as we continue to leverage next- generation optical and packet technologies”, says Vivek Gaur, Vice President – Network Engineering, for Colt. “Over the last couple of years, Colt and Cisco have built a strategic relationship centred on innovation, and we’re excited to continue to push boundaries for our customers and the industry. We know the requirement for ultra-high bandwidth services is increasing. With Cisco’s technology in specific layers of our network, we’ll have a scalable and efficient packet core network that fulfils the connectivity demands of our customers across the globe.”

“The internet is now an integral part of critical national infrastructure and must be continually reimagined to help transform the way we live. Colt is helping accelerate this as one of the first network providers to leverage the full capability of 400G OpenZR+ coherent pluggable optics in data centre interconnect for metro and long-haul applications,” said Adam MacHale, Vice President of EMEAR Service Provider, Cisco. “We look forward to continuing our exciting journey together with Colt and unleashing the full power of Routed Optical Networking technologies.”

Colt customers are expected to benefit from these upgrades in September 2021.

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About Colt

Colt strives to transform the way the world works through the power of connectivity - taking what’s always been in its DNA to enable customers’ success. The Colt IQ Network connects more than 900+ data centres and over 29,000 on net buildings across Europe, Asia and North America’s largest business hubs.

Colt understands today’s shifting connectivity requirements and provides agile, on-demand and secure high bandwidth networking and voice solutions to ensure enterprises can thrive. Customers include data-intensive organisations spanning over 210 cities in more than 30 countries. Colt is a recognised innovator and pioneer in Software Defined Networks (SDN) and Network Function Virtualisation (NFV).

Privately owned, Colt is one of the most financially sound companies in the sector, and because of this, it’s able to put its customers’ needs at its core. For more information, please visit

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