Equinix mulls Melbourne data centre

Launches third Sydney data centre (SY3)

Data centre provider Equinix is mulling construction of a Melbourne facility in response to growing demand from customers at its Sydney 1 (SY1) and Sydney 2 (SY2) facilities.

In pictures: Equinix's SY3 data centre

Speaking in Sydney at the launch of the company's Sydney 3 (SY3) facility, Equinix president, Samuel Lee, said Melbourne was high on the company’s radar screen.

“In the Asia Pacific [our priorities] are China, India, Melbourne and Osaka,” he said. “Osaka is no surprise. After the Japan earthquake the government is very keen to make Osaka the second financial and commercial capital of the county.

“We continue to hear lots of our customers in Sydney asking for Melbourne. When we track the capital movements there is a significant amount of money going into Melbourne. We also hear that the cost of doing business in Melbourne is relatively lower.”

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Lee said Equinix would be unlikely to build a national data network, similar to that to competitor NextDC, instead opting for a “disciplined approach”.

“We are pretty focused on tier one cities and where our customers tell us to go,” he said.

Equinix Australia managing director, Darren Mann, said customers such as IntraPower, CloudCentral, OrionVM, as well as a number of others, had expanded from SY1 and SY2 to SY3.

The company also has about 65 network service providers offering various services to customers in SY1 and SY2, Mann said. A number of these providers had decided to offer points of presence in SY3.

The company presently has some 300 customers in its Australian facilities.

Lee said the decision to assess a Melbourne data centre was based on its global strategy of selecting facilities based on their presence in “tier one” cities and based on customer requests for new services.

Lee defined tier one cities as those that have high GDP growth and levels of internet infrastructure and that act as financial hubs.

Based on this approach the company was also considering launching new facilities in Johannesburg, Dublin, Moscow, Madrid, Dubai, Stockholm, Istanbul, and Prague.

Commenting on the current financial turmoil, Lee said the company was unperturbed by the prospects of IT budgets shrinking for data centre services in yet another downturn. “No matter if you there is a crisis or not people still need data centre space,” he said. “Actually we collected [customers’] money before they started the service [at SY3]. We have all their services and equipment already inside the data centre so we are not worried [about a downturn].”

The company will also launch a ‘marketplace’ service which will encourage different types of customers — such as telcos and Cloud and hosting providers — in the same facility to buy services from each other.

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