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Singtel expands datacentre footprint in Indonesia

Singtel’s datacentre platform will host selected datacentre assets from Indonesia’s Telkom as part of the telco’s move to grow its datacentre footprint in key regional markets

Singtel is expanding its datacentre footprint in Indonesia through a partnership with Telkom to deploy its datacentre platform in Southeast Asia’s largest economy.

Telkom currently operates 27 datacentres in Indonesia and across the region. It is also building a hyperscale datacentre with 75 MW of capacity to serve local and foreign companies and hyperscalers.

As part of the partnership, selected datacentre assets from Telkom will be placed in Singtel’s datacentre platform. The two companies will also collaborate on development opportunities and explore bringing third-party investors or partners into the platform.

Yuen Kuan Moon, group CEO of Singtel, said the datacentre platform will support the digital transformation needs of Singtel customers looking to deploy into Indonesia, and Indonesian businesses looking to grow beyond the country.

Ririek Adriansyah, CEO of Telkom, the parent company of Singtel’s regional associate telco Telkomsel, said Telkom has been consolidating its datacentre business to address the challenges of digital transformation.

The regional datacentre platform, he added, is a continuation of its datacentre consolidation strategy and will pave the way for Telkom to become a global datacentre player.

“These efforts require strategic partnerships with operators who have proven capabilities and track records. With its strengths and experience, Singtel is one of the strategic partners for Telkom in developing this regional datacentre business," he said.

Singtel has been working with partners to build and acquire datacentres in Southeast Asia, a fast-growing datacentre market. By 2025, the datacentre markets in Singapore and Indonesia are expected to more than double in size, accounting for over 60% of regional growth.

In addressing the demands of the market, Singtel has carved out its top-tier datacentres, DC West and Kim Chuan 2, into a separate Singtel-owned entity with approximately 60 MW of capacity.

It has also secured a site in Tuas, in the west of Singapore, for a new cable landing and datacentre facility which will add 30 to 40 MW in capacity when ready in three to four years.

Besides Indonesia, Singtel is also eyeing the Thai datacentre market. In February, it signed a joint development agreement with Gulf Energy and its associate telco AIS to start developing datacentres in Thailand.

Michael Warrilow, vice-president analyst at Gartner, was sceptical about efforts by telcos to grow their datacentre footprint amid moves by hyperscalers such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) to expand their infrastructure in more locations through services like AWS Local Zones.

“Amazon’s roll out of Local Zones is particularly good for Thailand, Philippines and Vietnam,” Warrilow told Computer Weekly. “To have at least some basic Amazon functionality in-country is going to spur more cloud adoption in the region, and it’s going to further diminish the attractions that telcos have as a hosting provider.”

That said, Warrilow singled out opportunities in 5G and edge computing, areas where hyperscalers are partnering with telcos on in various countries.

In March 2021, Singtel and its Australian subsidiary Optus added AWS Outposts to their stable of hybrid cloud technologies from hyperscale cloud providers in their respective multi-access edge compute (MEC) platforms.

Singtel said at the time that the move would enable enterprises to take advantage of 5G applications like robotics, drones, autonomous vehicles, and artificial intelligence. The MECs with AWS Outposts can be accessed from the closest Singtel site to help businesses operate their applications that use AWS tools and require ultra-low latency data processing.

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