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Global investment in data centres more than doubled last year

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The total investment in global data centre infrastructure more than doubled in 2021 to US$53.8 billion.

The total number of data centre transactions increased by 64% in the same period, up from 69 in 2020 to 113 in 2021, according to a report from global law firm DLA Piper.

The report surveyed 100 senior executives from infrastructure, equity and debt provider firms and data centre developers from around the world.

Anthony Day, Global Co-Chair, Technology and Sourcing, at DLA Piper, said: "Our report reveals record-breaking investment in data centres fueled by the irrepressible growth of the hyperscalers and the transition to cloud services that has been accelerated by the pandemic.

“There is no end to this demand, with investment to date in 2022 more than doubled for the same period in 2021. Data centres are energy intensive concerns and, therefore, rising energy prices and the question of security of supply are playing an increasingly important part in the decision process of where and how centres are developed.”

This growth is set to continue given there have been 41 transactions, worth US$21.3 billion for the current year to June 7, 2022.

This is an increase of over 100% compared to the same period last year and almost as much as the combined annual value seen in both 2019 and 2020.

The record-breaking growth is driven by the growth of hyperscalers such as Facebook, Google and Microsoft which have thrived amid the transition to cloud service.

ESG is another significant factor shaping data centre investment. Almost all senior executives (94%) said that scrutiny and due diligence surrounding ESG issues increased in the past 24 months.

“An energy efficient data centre is attractive to customers and easier to commercialise and if the energy used is also renewable then it becomes an even more attractive proposition from an ESG perspective, especially to senior executives in both Europe and North America,” Day added.

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