Asia Global Crossing, IRI Tie on Japan Data Center

TOKYO (01/27/2000) - Asia Global Crossing Ltd., which is building a regional undersea fiber optic cable network, and Internet Research Institute Inc. (IRI), a Japanese Internet consultancy, today announced plans to form a joint venture to build an Internet data center in Japan.

To be called GlobalCenter Japan, the data center will be 89 percent owned by Asia Global Crossing with IRI holding the remaining 11 percent stake. Financial details of the venture were not available.

The new company borrows its name from Global Crossing Ltd.'s existing U.S.-based data center subsidiary GlobalCenter Inc. which, according to the company, hosts several major Web sites, including Yahoo, Motley Fool, Ziff Davis, MP3.com and others. In the U.S., Global Crossing has tied the data center and Web hosting services of GlobalCenter with its own national and international Internet backbone network and plans to do the same in Japan.

GlobalCenter Japan will connect with its new Pacific Crossing 1 (PC-1) and planned East Asia Crossing fiber-optic networks.

"The beauty of this business is that our customers can use the Global Crossing managed network," said Nao Yanagawa, deputy director of Global Crossing Japan.

He said this makes for a more reliable service and will allow the company to offer different service levels in the future, some of which include guarantees associated with the network in addition to the data center services.

The news is the latest in a string of announcements from companies planning to build data centers in Japan. At present such facilities are in their infancy and the ventures are mainly rushing to stake a claim on the market.

Earlier this month, Exodus Communications Inc. disclosed plans for a Japanese Internet data center to be built and run with Nomura Research Institute Ltd., and local telecommunications carrier Crosswave Communications Corp. also said that it will build a data center for a planned multimedia center. [See "Exodus, Nomura Research to Build Japan Data Center," Jan. 18, and "Crosswave Wins Image City Data Center Contract," Jan. 5.]Late in 1999, U.S.-based AboveNet Communications Inc. formed a joint venture with trading house Marubeni Corp. and Trans Cosmos Inc. to also build a data center. The new company, AboveNet Japan KK has announced plans to open its service in April this year.

Asia Global Crossing is a joint venture of Global Crossing Ltd., Microsoft Corp. and Softbank Corp. Internet Research Institute Inc. is a recently listed Internet consultancy that includes some of Japan's most famous people in the Internet industry among its partners.

Asia Global Crossing, in California, can be reached via the Web at http://www.globalcrossing.com/. Internet Research Institute, in Tokyo, is at http://www.iri.co.jp/.

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