In February 2019, the leading data center operator IXcellerate announced its strategic plans to expand data center network in Russia.
Six month later, the company launched its second data center, Moscow Two. IXcellerate spent a total of $80 mio to build two facilities and plans to open another two worth some $230 mio in the Moscow Region within the next five years. The company’s experts estimate that the move will allow the operator to occupy about 25% of the local market. Today, Moscow Two is one of Russia’s largest commercial data centers built almost solely on finances provided by foreign investors, which is particularly significant today when most foreign investors are winding down their operations in Russia. The investors of IXcellerate, which operates data centers in Moscow and has its head office located in London, include such financial corporations as Goldman Sachs, IFC and Sumitomo Corporation.
The company’s top officials are confident that they will succeed in implementing their plans. Upon the new data center’s launch, current and new clients had already reserved over 85% of its capacities, or 1,480 rack units located in a 3,000 sq.m. room. IXcellerate provides services of safe equipment placement and connecting their clients to IT infrastructure network. The operator’s clients include over 100 international and Russian companies, such as Nestle, Thomson Reuters, Orange Business Services, Softline, Agricultural Bank of China (Moscow), Huawei, Tencent Cloud, Zenlayer, and others. Over 50% of the company’s revenues comes from Asia-based corporations. Last year’s revenues grew twofold against 2017, with this year’s growth rate remaining the same.
An increase in demand for data centers on the Russian and foreign markets is caused by several factors, including the increasingly growing need to store data. The snowballing growth of big data has caused the need to both store and to manage data, as well as to provide quick access to it. It is especially true for Russia: for instance, there are 31 data centers per 6 mio citizens in Singapore, while in Russia, there are over 50 data centers per 140 mio citizens. A large population, high level of internet connectivity and vast engineering and intellectual potential are the key factors of the growing demand for data centers in Russia.
Companies use data centers to ensure their business continuity and improve the efficiency of business processes. Businesses are based on IT operations, and a reliable infrastructure is required to maintain their operations. It is quite difficult and expensive to create and support this infrastructure, so the alternative is to outsource. One of the main objectives of data centers is to create suitable conditions for placing their clients’ computing infrastructure. Thus, for instance, IXcellerate provides the accessibility of its services at 99.99%. This means, it allows no more than 5 minutes and 16 seconds of idle time per year.
The so called Digital Silk Road, or the expansion of Chinese IT giants in Russia, is another reason why data centers are becoming popular. Moscow is a hub on the way to Europe for many Asian corporations such as Huawei, Tencent, Alibaba and others. They need reliable platforms for data storage and processing. According to iKS-Consulting agency, the data center market in Russia grows by 20% every year.