Rittal, Circle B en Switch Datacenters launching OCP Experience Center

With the first OCP Experience Center in Europe, Rittal, Circle B and Switch Datacenters show what OCP means in concrete terms.
With the completion of this first operational OCP Experience Center in Europe the three companies underline their leading role in the Dutch and European market for OCP promotion and deployment.

Rittal, Circle B and Switch Datacenters announce today that they have built their first OCP Experience Center in Amsterdam. With this, the companies realize the long-standing desire in the market to make OCP concrete and tangible. Thanks to the joint action, a complete operational OCP environment has been established in a few months’ time. The system consists of racks equipped with IT hardware that can be used by Telecom, as well as colocation or dedicated data centers.

This is the first time that Rittal, Circle B and Switch Datacenters work together on a noncommercial project on such a scale. The racks are from Rittal and the hardware comes from Circle B. Switch Datacenters provides space in the Amsterdam datacenter and the necessary connections available.


The reason for the collaboration is that both Rittal, Circle B and Switch Datacenters have established that within the IT sector IT managers at enterprises and governments pay remarkably little attention to OCP. OCP was founded by Facebook, Rackspace and Microsoft. It forms the basis on which hyper-scalers, with the large data centers that offer their cloud services from, operate. In the US and elsewhere it is a topic that is higher on the agenda and there is a strong growth in the number of deployments visible.

If the topic is already discussed in the Netherlands, then the knowledge is still small and the expectations are partly not in line with actual practice. André Hiddink, Product Manager IT Infrastructure at Rittal, was looking for a way to remove the noise over OCP from the market. Menno Kortekaas from Circle B, who already provides OCP solutions and spoke more often with Rittal about the subject, found that there was no operational demonstration environment in Europe. Edgar Essen, MD of Switch Datacenters, which already has the necessary experience with OCP, recognized the picture. He also missed the discussion about innovations based on OCP for data centers in the Netherlands. These three perspectives have led to a unique form of cooperation. The first result is the OCP Experience Center.


The collaboration must lead to OCP becoming concrete. Hiddink: “OCP is already being used on a large scale by hyper-scalers. They do not allow a visit to their own data centers. As a result, only a few can imagine something at OCP and this inhibits necessary discussions and innovations at Dutch organizations.” The Experience Center is accessible. The datacenter floor is set up and operational. In addition, visitors can receive information about the various possibilities of OCP in the reception area. Van Essen indicates that the combination of the two spaces is important. “We know from experience that after the visit to a data center floor that questions will arise. We can optimally facilitate this in the reception area.”

Target audience

The OCP Experience Center can be visited from today. Agreements for this can be made with one of three partners of the project. Kortekaas from Circle B expects that the interest will not only come from the angle of the enterprises. “Fintechs are an example of companies from a sector that rely heavily on open software standards and have a large IT need. Those kinds of parties will become seriously interested in OCP.
Van Essen assumes that the Experience Center will also be visited by the telecom sector. “Open standards, such as OCP, offer the freedom that this sector needs. Working with closed systems and the ensuing vendor lock-ins is under pressure because they are not the answer to the new challenges of the telecom sector. “This applies in particular IoT and 5G, which requires a completely different network architecture. That is why the largest telecom operators are active in the global OCP consortium.

OCP Regional Summit

The opening of the OCP Experience Center is prior to the OCP Regional Summit, which will be held at the Amsterdam RAI on 1 and 2 October. Visitors to the summit will have the opportunity to visit the Experience Center. Hiddink: “We show interested people from the Netherlands and abroad that we are serious about OCP. We set the tone with an operational set-up that everyone can come to look at.