Deputy Premier and Minister for trade and investment, Andrew Stoner, spoke at Rackspace’s media event in Sydney about the multi-million dollar investment that the hosting company has made with the datacentre.
“This investment will mean that 50 new jobs will be created in Western Sydney region over the next three years,” he said.
Stoner said the Erskine Park-based datacentre fell within the guidelines of the NSW Office of State Revenue’s Jobs Action Plan, meaning that the 50 datacentre employees were eligible for the Payroll Tax Rebate Scheme.
Stoner clarified that Rackspace’s datacentre received no direct financial support from the NSW Government as an incentive to establish it in Sydney, and instead relied on the Payroll Tax Rebate Scheme.
“This datacentre confirms NSW and Sydney as the home of the expanding digital economy,” Stoner said.
“It demonstrates the confidence that global companies into the role Sydney and NSW will play in ICT.”
While the NSW government has not signed on as a customer with Rackspace in Sydney, Stoner said the Government “certainly is able to do that” once their own IT systems will be updated to a Cloud model.
Rackspace Hosting APAC managing director and VP, Jim Fagan, described Australia as the most mature IT market in the APC region and a key point for expansion for the provider.
“Our growth into APAC began with out Hong Kong datacentre in September 2008,” he said.
“We established our Australian sales office in Sydney in 2009.”
Although Fagan said Rackspace already has eight datacentres around the world, there were “major requests” to host data in datacentre onshore in Australia.
“We hope that the Sydney datacentre will bring a big opportunity for Australian businesses,” he said.
The Sydney datacentre will make use of Rackspace’s full suite of products.
“As our newest datacentre, we will be rolling out latest and greatest products into it and having less legacy within it,” Fagan said.
Rackspace Hosting A/NZ country manager, Mark Randall, emphasises that the Sydney datacentre will be built to Rackspace’s global standards and feature the company’s “fanatical” support.
“We have learnt that Australian customers love fanatical support,” he said.
“Local consumers are very pleased that we are coming here and setting up a local datacentre.”
Randall said the Sydney operation will have the “exact same SLAs” as the other global Rackspace datacentres, and foresees customers joining by the end of the year.
“We already offer contracts under NSW law for those concerned about data sovereignty,” he said.
Data in the Sydney datacentre will only be hosted in Australia unless a customer makes a request to have it in a different country.
“We won’t give data to another country without consent, including the US with the Patriot Act,” Randall said.
As to how the datacentre will stand out from the other competing facilities in Sydney and Australia, Randall highlighted Rackspace’s fanatical support (“service will never be a commodity”), expertise (“staff on site 24/7”), and values (“full disclosure with no hidden charges”).