PMB plans further data centres

Following the announcement last week of its plans to launch a £35 million data centre project in Milton Keynes, UK, PMB Holdings director of investment and development, Ed Jones, told Capacity that the company is planning further expansion in the industry.

Jones said that the commercial real estate and leisure investment group was also planning sites in Birmingham and London to compliment the Milton Keynes operation.

He explained that the company’s venture into the data centre industry came as the result of an expected increase in the demand for data: “The demand for data storage is getting greater and greater, so our view is that there is a serious wall of demand that’s coming.” He stressed that the company was not trying to be operator but would rather stick to its property background as a “real estate provider of powered shelf space.”

Jones also insisted that the data centre business will be a long term venture for the company and that it would sit well alongside its mainstream property business:

“It seemed to us that there was a market for us to provide our expertise and we want to build a long term business. One of the attractions is that it is a business that’s very defensive and will sit well alongside our mainstream property business.”

When asked about the Milton Keynes site’s unique selling point, Jones said that its connectivity position and power supply were key, along with the flexibility of the offering in terms of layout and pricing. PMB intends to pay for the power upfront and has planning consent for a single large structure, or a series of smaller buildings, on the 240 000 square foot site. He also said that it would be significantly cheaper than data centre solutions located in or around London.

The company’s target market for the Milton Keynes site is systems integrators, and retail and wholesale collocation operators. With the additional possibility of owner occupiers if they want to take the whole site and develop over time.

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