NAPAfrica, Africa’s leading Internet eXchange Point (IXP) and the sixth largest exchange globally, has welcomed social media platform TikTok to its growing community.

At the same time, NAPAfrica announced a significant milestone in its growth journey by surpassing the 4Tbps (Terabits per second) traffic milestone, solidifying its position as the pivotal exchange for internet traffic across the African continent.

NAPAfrica reached the 3Tbps traffic threshold in March 2023, representing a 33% growth in traffic volumes in under a year.

“The presence of over 250 carriers and networks is the drawcard for content providers like TikTok to join the exchange,” says Michele McCann, Head of Platforms at Teraco.

“One of the most significant benefits of an active peering community (or IXP) is the cost-effective, efficient distribution of content to the consumer – and the demand for business services like cloud and entertainment just continues to increase.


“This continued surge in data traffic is primarily thanks to an African internet community that has embraced the value of peering, the increasing use of data-intensive applications, enterprises continuing to move into the cloud, and the ever-increasing demand for video, content, and gaming delivery services. These trends have driven greater traffic levels between cloud and service providers, enterprises, and end users.

“This rapid traffic growth mirrors the increasing demand by users for content and cloud services via NAPAfrica. Our steadfast commitment lies in propelling digital transformation throughout Africa, empowering our clients to cater to their user communities across the continent seamlessly,” she adds.

Content providers and enterprises looking to expand into Africa can accelerate their plans by partnering with the right infrastructure providers as businesses commit to moving more of their functions to the cloud. Increased investment by global cloud providers is driving wider availability of internet-based digital services across Africa.

Most enterprises in larger African economies prefer a hybrid cloud approach to their IT infrastructure, allowing them to select the most suitable workload solution, avoid large capital expenditure by moving from capex to opex, and better control their data. This includes adopting Everything as a Service (XaaS), which allows businesses to increase operational agility by deploying IT infrastructure without waiting for physical hardware to be deployed.

NAPAfrica has become organisations’ cornerstone, supporting their internet and communication needs and cloud adoption strategies. The continued investment into critical telecommunications infrastructure in Africa has contributed enormously to the growth of NAPAfrica, as has the continent’s demand for content and cloud services like Microsoft Azure and AWS.

Enterprises are leveraging the benefits of peering by connecting with cloud deployments, networks, security providers, and content providers within the NAPAfrica ecosystem to move to a digital economy. Increased network demand to service remote users has driven the adoption of key cloud and security applications. These include Akamai, Amazon, Cloudflare, Microsoft, and Zscaler.

Established in 2012, NAPAfrica today has over 560 members actively peering and has grown to become Africa’s biggest internet exchange and the sixth largest globally by the number of members, playing a pivotal role in transforming Africa’s internet access and interconnection.


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