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Liberty Global and Digital Colony plan 100 site edge data centre network

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Liberty Global and investment fund Digital Colony have created the AtlasEdge Data Centres joint venture, with the aim of establishing over 100 branded edge data centres across Europe.

The two companies expect to close the joint venture deal during the third quarter of this year and to then start offering edge data centre services to new clients.

AtlasEdge will deliver services via an “extensive network of facilities located close to consumer and enterprise end users”, said the partners.

The company aims to serve the growing demand from cloud providers, streaming services and enterprises for “high-performance, scalable and secure facilities” to support the low latency needs of applications and services around 5G, gaming, IoT and edge compute, the partners added.

Liberty Global will contribute existing infrastructure assets, including its technical real estate portfolios, and strategic and operational support to the joint business. Digital Colony will provide operating expertise and capital to support the venture.

Upon closing of the JV, industry veteran Josh Joshi will join and lead AtlasEdge’s board of directors as executive chairman. Joshi was previously CFO of Interxion.

AtlasEdge will be supported by anchor tenancies from Liberty Global operating companies in four European countries: Virgin Media in the UK and Ireland, Sunrise-UPC in Switzerland and UPC in Poland.

The partners have not confirmed where the other facilities will be located or whether new builds will be started. Along with Liberty, Digital Colony has plenty of data centres of its own, from edge to hyperscale size.

Digital Colony recently raised $4.1 billion for its second fund and invests in and operates businesses across the digital ecosystem, including towers, data centres, fibre networks and small cells. It manages a $32 billion portfolio of infrastructure assets.

Only this week, Digital Colony said it was acquiring Landmark Dividend, the real estate and infrastructure acquisition and development company, for $972 million. Landmark has acquired 20 data centres in the last 12 months alone.

Mike Fries, CEO of Liberty Global, said: “Combining Liberty Global’s technical real estate and track record in building successful, sustainable businesses with Digital Colony’s expertise in digital infrastructure investment creates an exciting platform for growth that will deliver long-term value.”

Marc Ganzi, CEO of Digital Colony, added: “The joint venture will capitalise on the emerging demand we are seeing for edge compute across Europe. I also know AtlasEdge will benefit from Josh Joshi’s insights and network across the digital infrastructure landscape.”

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