Linxdatacenter acquired by Russia's wealth fund to build national infrastructure

19 April 2021 | Antony Savvas

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Russia's sovereign wealth fund Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) has acquired leading regional data centre operator Linxdatacenter, which uses facilities in Moscow and St Petersburg to link international businesses with cloud services and networks across Eastern and Western Europe.

RDIF's deal has been struck alongside Russia's JSC ER-Telecom Holding and Middle East investment fund Talos Fund I LP - which specialises in advanced technologies.

The partners said the joint investment will lead to the “creation of a leading autonomous cloud service in Russia based on Linxdatacenter assets”.

Linxdatacenter, founded 18 years ago, is actually headquartered in the Netherlands, and along with data centres in Russia it has interconnectivity deals with data centres in Poland, the Baltics and Frankfurt, among other locations.

To achieve the deal, the consortium purchased a 100% stake in Svyaz VSD LLC, the Russian subsidiary of the Netherlands-based Linx Telecommunications Holding BV. The purchase includes the LinxCloud platform and the two Tier III data centres in Moscow and St. Petersburg (pictured) - with a total area of 144,000 sq ft.

The company's cloud strategy going forward will concentrate on the expansion of Linxdatacenter's virtual services’ portfolio, said the partners, “in cooperation with RDIF’s international partners”.

Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the Russian Direct Investment Fund, said: “The acquisition of Linxdatacenter, together with a strong Russian strategic player and our partner from the Middle East with access to unique technological solutions, is aimed at accomplishing an ambitious goal of accelerating the development of Russia's digital infrastructure.”

He said: “The priority for our platform is to develop Russia’s leading cloud service based on advanced AI technologies. Successful implementation of the project will be possible by using RDIF’s experience in implementing high-tech projects, ER-Telecom’s technological support as well as the expertise of the Fund’s international partners.”

Andrey Kuzyaev, CEO of JSC ER-Telecom Holding, added: “We see the purchase as an excellent opportunity to enter the commercial cloud data centre market and enhancing the service portfolio we provide for our B2B customers.

“Over the next two years we plan to significantly expand the capacity of our existing data centres and build and increase additional capacity.”

JSC ER-Telecom Holding currently provides broadband access, telecom services, digital TV, Wi-Fi access, VPNs and LoRaWAN, CCTV and IoT services.