Feature

Building for the Global Hyperscale Era

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Demand for hyperscale data centre capacity has never been greater. We examine the drivers behind the demand, and look at how Colt Data Centre Services has been investing to meet the market's need.

The rise of the market for cloud-based services is driving the need for high quality data centre capacity to match. A new generation of large data centres is emerging designed specifically to answer this need, in particular to meet the urgent requirements of the world’s major cloud platforms.

“Hyperscale data centre demand is undoubtedly being fuelled by cloud take-up,” believes Detlef Spang, CEO with Colt Data Centre Services (DCS). “We’re talking about public cloud, private cloud or hybrid cloud services. Enterprises and consumers everywhere are more and more interested in consuming applications and services in that way. Everyone has a smartphone and wants to use it to access content in the cloud, and more and more enterprise workloads depend on it. The world needs data centres that can support this trend.”

The cloud phenomenon is clearly global, says Spang, noting that there are perhaps 15 or so hyperscale cloud providers around the world who are dominating the market in the US and China.

Spang notes that the creation of the right kind of data centres is critical to enable hyperscalers to address numerous areas of demand: “You have classic cloud applications like data storage,” he says. “Plus most of the information that we need to access on a daily basis in the cloud, such as airline and train times,

or simply to use Facebook. Now you have newer applications coming in, like AI and IoT, which will drive the demand for cloud on further. Consider how people are talking about gaming being available from the cloud, and not from an Xbox or PlayStation any longer, or the fact that Netflix and Amazon Prime are all available from the cloud. We’re seeing more and more in the cloud, and less and less on private devices.”

Spang says it’s the job of data centre owners and operators like Colt DCS to provide services to hyperscale companies so that they can cater to this wide and growing list of technologies and cloud-based services: “These new technologies are where the dramatic growth market is, and it is that growth spurt that we are aiming to participate in,” he adds. “We have already been very successful in places like London, Paris, Frankfurt and Tokyo. Phase two is not only develop existing campuses, but acquiring new land to build new hyperscale data centres.”

Over the past year, Asia has featured significantly in the company’s plans. In a recent announcement, Colt DCS said it has acquired a site in Osaka in Japan. The Osaka site will house the company’s first hyperscale data centre in the region in the form of a 30MW facility, building of which is expected to commence later this year.

Osaka, points out Spang, has a huge population. It is Japan’s second largest economic market and the 12th largest metro market in the world. Demand from online content providers, managed service and cloud service providers is expected to grow significantly there over the next five years, he adds. The Osaka data centre will be Colt DCS’ third hyperscale data centre in Japan, adding to the existing Inzai campus just east of Tokyo, which already houses two other hyperscale facilities. The Osaka data centre will also provide customers access to highly-skilled, bi-lingual in-house staff to manage its facilities and support customers, a key solution that sets Colt DCS apart from other providers in the region.

“Asia is very important for us,” explains Spang. “Growth predictions there are in the 30% per annum range. We already have a strong foundation in Japan, so it was a natural move to set up in Osaka, the country’s second largest city. With a population of 18 million, it is not a small city. We want to offer services there to our client base. We’re also working on a new building on our Tokyo campus too, which will give us an added 27MW there.”