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OVH opens first UK data centre in old telco building – two more planned

11 January 2017

OVH, the French cloud provider, has decided to locate its first three UK data centres in London.

This first data centre, which will have a capacity of 40,000 servers, is expected to be operational by the end of May 2017.

The physical building the new data centre will be housed in was previously owned by a telecommunications company OVH declined to name, and it has ambitious plans to fit it out in six months. The company plans at least two more data centres in the UK for disaster recovery purposes.

The first of the three data centres will be interconnected to OVH’s point of presence in London through a double fibre path, providing it with redundancy. Its proximity to two substations makes it possible to provide a high electrical capacity on site.

Located less than half a millisecond from OVH’s point of presence (PoP) in London, the new facility benefits from a direct connection to its data centresin Gravelines (then Roubaix and Paris), Amsterdam (then Brussels and Frankfurt), Montreal, and New York, through the fibre network that the OVH group has deployed worldwide to reduce latency.

OVH’s first UK data centre will cover 4,000 square metres with no colocation space. The European cloud leader expects the data centre to be operational at the end of May 2017.

The speed of deployment is helped, said OVH, by the nature of the facility that formerly belonged to a telecommunications operator.

The two other data centres OVH plans to set up in the UK will provide users with a backup solution: a second site on the outskirts of London, and a third one that is sufficiently remote that it can operate as a recovery site outside the failure domain of the two other sites. These three facilities will be interconnected, like the other datacenters of the group, through OVH’s private network.

Rajesh Agrawal, deputy mayor of London for business, said: "OVH's decision to open its first UK data centre in London offers further proof that London remains open to investment, talent and innovation from all over the world. We look forward to welcoming more innovative technology businesses such as OVH to London."

OVH has had a presence in the UK since 2007, via a subsidiary based in London, and is located a few miles from the planned first data centre. The company claims that it has already attracted 'many’ British customers such as BulbThings, which aims to revolutionise asset management through data mining, Lineup Systems, a company that specialises in online advertising tools, and XTM International, an English leader in translation technologies.

In order to fund its global expansion project, OVH completed a capital increase of €250 million with two investment funds, KKR and TowerBrook in 2016. The company also announced a €1.5 billion investment plan over 5 years. This will cover the construction of several additional datacenters by the end of 2017 in the United States, Italy, Spain, the UK, the Netherlands, and in Germany, where OVH has just acquired its first site near its PoP of Frankfurt.

Topics: OVH, OVH new data centres