PAG Real Estate and Kris Kumar launch digital infraco

20 August 2021 | Melanie Mingas

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Former Chindata exec Kris Kumar has teamed up with PAG Real Estate to launch a digital infraco that will act as an investor/operator.

With plans to operate across Asia, the unnamed company will begin operations in September with a focus on colocation, cloud, hyperscale and enterprise data centres, as well as network and fibre assets in the Asia-Pacific region.

Kumar and PAG said it will "address the rapidly expanding demand for experienced skillsets and risk-managed capital allocation in the acquisition, development, ownership and operation of digital infrastructure assets".

“With PAG’s entrepreneurial approach, decades of experience, superior investment track record and ready access to a competitive cost of capital, my perennial enthusiasm for the sector quickly resurfaced, to lift me out of my year-long retirement,” said Kumar, who will take on the role of chair.

Previously Kumar has served as the founding executive and regional head of Asia-Pacific for Digital Realty; the founder and CEO of Bridge Data Centres, and the vice chairman of Chindata Group Holdings post the merger of Bridge Data Centres with Chindata, which listed on the NASDAQ in September 2020.

He added: “I am looking forward to helping build a platform company on the strong foundation of an already-substantive investment by PAG in the sector over the last four years. I strongly believe in our vision of becoming a diligent, customer-focused, and profitable digital infrastructure investor/operator in the region. We are assembling a strong team with a diverse skill set and best-in-class investment and operational experience, to execute this vision.”

"Several experienced senior executives" are expected to join the company, although further names have not been released.

PAG President Jon-Paul Toppino said: “Kris is an icon in the digital infrastructure industry, and we are very excited to work with him to create this platform company that will serve the infrastructure needs of this new digital era that we live in.”

Toppino added: “With his experience and PAG’s expertise in development and investment, we are looking forward to building a robust platform that will stand the test of time.”

The team expects to focus efforts on Japan, Australia, and other Asian markets.