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DigitalBridge and IFM buy data centre operator Switch for $11bn

Marc Ganzi (2).png

Mark Ganzi’s DigitalBridge is to buy Switch, a Las Vegas-based data centre operator, for US$11 billion in cash.

Under the deal, announced on Wednesday, DigitalBridge and a partner investor will pay $34.25 a share for the company, whose shares were trading on the New York Stock Exchange for $33.38 before the announcement.

Marc Ganzi (pictured), CEO of DigitalBridge, said: “We are building the world’s leading global digital infrastructure investment platform, and this transaction allows us to partner with one of the industry’s fastest growing and highest quality data centre portfolios.”

Switch founder and CEO Rob Roy said: “Following our expansion into a fifth prime campus last year, and with our plan to construct more than 11 million additional square feet of capacity through 2030, Switch’s strategic position has never been stronger.”

Ganzi said: “Rob and his team share our vision for the future of communications infrastructure, making us the ideal partner to scale their business both domestically and internationally to meet the exponentially rising demand from large enterprise customers looking for mission critical digital infrastructure.”

The acquisition is by DigitalBridge and an affiliate of global infrastructure investor IFM Investors, based in Melbourne, Australia. Its investments include UK tower company Arqiva and GlasfaserPlus, a joint venture with Deutsche Telekom to build a fibre network in Germany, as well as airports plus energy and water infrastructure.

Kyle Mangini, global head of infrastructure at IFM, said: “We consider Switch to be an excellent digital infrastructure business with strong potential. The company is a recognized industry leader with an impressive approach to ESG.”

Switch’s Roy said: “Today’s announcement is an important step towards our long-term vision for the growth and evolution of our company. Through this partnership we will be ideally positioned to continue to meet strong customer demand for Switch’s environmentally sustainable Tier 5 data centre infrastructure.”

He added: “The combination of our advanced data centre infrastructure, significant expansion capacity in our land bank, and a new partnership with experienced digital infrastructure investors lays a strong foundation for Switch’s continued industry leading growth.”

Switch’s share price has climbed steadily since the end of 2018, when it was $6.50. At the end of 2021 it was $28.64, more than four times that figure.