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Equinix, Digital Realty and NGD fuel UK colocation market growth with datacentre expansions

Colocation giants Equinix, Digital Realty and Next Generation Data open up about the multi-million pound commitments they are making to expanding their datacentre footprint in the UK

The UK colocation market is continuing to grow, with three of its biggest participants – Equinix, Digital Realty and Next Generation Data (NGD) – announcing multi-million pound expansions of their datacentre campuses.

Equinix is continuing to build out its presence in Slough, revealing plans this week to open another £90m datacentre at its existing campus in the East Berkshire town during early 2019.

According to Equinix, the new facility, dubbed LD7, will provide thousands of businesses with access to the services of hundreds of network providers and hyperscale cloud firms who rely on its interconnection platform to distribute their wares around the world.

The firm also further claims the investment now means it has contributed a total of £295m to the UK digital economy throughout 2018/19, on the back of its datacentre expansion efforts.

Russell Poole, UK managing director of Equinix, said this investment should be considered indicative of its confidence that London will weather any potential the economic storm caused by Brexit with ease.

“Our decision to invest again in the UK’s digital infrastructure reflects our confidence that London will remain a leader in the global digital economy, regardless of the outcome of the negotiations over the UK’s departure from the European Union,” he said.

“LD7 will be one of the most technologically advanced colocation data centres in the world and will be a major addition to our thriving London Slough campus. This latest datacentre will also act as a sustainability benchmark for future datacentres – something we are very passionate about.”

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Digital Realty, meanwhile, has opened a new datacentre at its Crawley campus, which it claims has been built specifically to serve the needs of London businesses.

The facility is the second the firm has opened at the site, and will see its colocation capacity increase in size by 55,000 square feet, the company confirmed.

Rob Coupland, managing director for Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at Digital Realty, said the build is part of a £208m commitment the firm has made to invest in its Crawley campus.  

“We know from our recently published Data Economy Report that data centres deliver a significant boost to the economy,” he said.

“This is why we’ll continue to power our customers’ digital ambitions through our investments so that we can help them put in place the digital foundations from which they can gain competitive edge, expand and grow their businesses.”

Datacentre investment

NGD, the operators of what is reported to be Europe’s biggest colocation campus, announced this week that it has invested an additional £40m in its Cardiff-based datacentre this year to bring additional data halls online within its 750,000 square foot facility.

Justin Jenkins, managing director of NGD, said the continued expansion of its campus has brought follow-on benefits to surrounding community in the form of employment and outside investment.

“Over the years, NGD has successfully transformed the facility into Europe’s largest data centre which has attracted some of the world’s largest companies into the region,” said Jenkins.

“At the same time, we have provided direct employment as well as regular work for hundreds of contractors while also serving the IT needs of a growing number of fast growing local businesses.” 

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