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Virtus plots £500m colocation expansion with five datacentres planned for Slough and Hayes

Virtus Data Centres is continuing to build out its colocation footprint within the M25, with five facilities set to open during the next two years

Virtus Data Centres has outlined its commitment to expanding its London colocation footprint by simultaneously building five additional datacentres within the M25 over the next two years.

The company claims the undertaking is one of the biggest construction projects embarked on by a European colocation provider, with the new capacity set to be added to its existing datacentre campuses in Slough, Berkshire, and Hayes, Middlesex.

As such, three new datacentres will be built at its Slough site, resulting in its capacity expanding by 36MW to 63MW in total, which – the company claims – will make it the largest campus in the area.

Two of the sites – dubbed London9 and London10 respectively – already have anchor tenants lined up, and are on course to go live in 2019 and 2020. The third site, London3, has already been kitted out, and reportedly has 70% of its capacity already reserved.

The remaining two datacentres – London6 and London7 – will see an addition 40MW of capacity added to Virtus’s campus in Stockley Park, Hayes, once they go live in 2019 and 2020 respectively.

The site is already the home of Virtus’s 24MW London5 datacentre, which went live in July 2018 and is already said to be at 75% capacity.

Collectively, these builds will result in the size of Virtus’s London-based datacentre portfolio doubling over the next couple of years to 145MW, the company added.

These build outs are expected to cost more than £500m, and are being bank-rolled by Virtus’s parent company, ST Telemedia Global Data Centres (GDC), which acquired the company in October 2017.

Virtus’s expansion strategy has to date focused on either building or buying sites within the M25, rather than invest in land and facilities within central London, and has seen it pick up a wide range of customers within the public sector, life sciences and education markets.

Neil Cresswell, CEO of Virtus Data Centres, said the expansion plans are part of its commitment to meeting the needs of customers who require fast, ready access to colocation capacity near to London.

“Our enterprise and cloud customers have capacity and speed to market challenges in key markets like London,” he said.

Bruno Lopez, group CEO of ST Telemedia GDC, said the company’s ability to add so much capacity to its colocation hubs at once should help cement Virtus’s reputation as one of the UK’s fastest growing colocation providers.

“As one of the leading financial capitals of the world and a major hub for business activities in Europe, the UK datacentre market has been growing at a robust pace over the past few years,” he said.

“Virtus’s ability to add capacity on a large scale in the UK is part of STT GDC’s continuing investment to best serve the digital infrastructure needs of customers and provide them with the flexibility and scalability required for their business plans.

“We are confident that we will be able to help Virtus build on the success of its UK operations and continue to offer one of the leading and fastest-growing data centre platforms in the country,” Lopez added.

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