Show Me The (Data Center) Money

Recent headlines in the data center industry have featured some large dollar signs, as noted by Eric Norlin over at the NGDC blog. “How do I know that the data center will be a huge topic over the next 3-5 years?,” Eric writes. “It’s where the money is.” His post was prompted by the $600 million (or perhaps $1.8 billion) pricetag for Google’s data center in North Carolina.

When it comes to data center investment, Google’s high-profile projects are just the tip of a much larger iceberg. How big is that spending? Here’s a quick summary of some of our headlines from June:

  • $600 million: Investment announced by Google in its new data center in Council Bluffs, Iowa (June 12).
  • $482 million: Amount Equinix will pay to acquire IXEurope (June 28)
  • $250 million: Total new financing for Terremark to finance its expansion and and purchase of Data Return (June 12)
  • $100 million: Planned investment by TeleCityRedbus in its new London data center (June 21)
  • $100 million: Expansion financing announced by Navisite Inc. (June 9)
  • $90 million: Expected cost for Equinix to buy a Los Angeles data center and expand its existing Santa Clara facility (June 14)
  • $86 million: Investment by IBM to upgrade its Boulder, Colo. data center with the company’s latest energy-efficient technology (June 22)
  • $70 million: Investment by Mellon Bank to upgrade its year-old data center near Pittsburgh (June 27)
  • $40 million: Amount of money Internap will spend to expand its colocation space (June 12)
  • $3 million: Cost of six new generators being purchased by The Planet, a Dallas dedicated hosting provider (June 6)

That works out to $1.57 billion in announced spending for data center construction or expansion projects, and another $350 million in financing to fund data center expansions. And that’s just one month, and only what’s being announced publicly. Keeping in mind the Fight Club Rule of Data Center Secrecy, it’s likely that there are many other projects that aren’t being publicized. How big is data center spending? Suffice to say that it’s one big honking iceberg.

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About the Author

Rich Miller is the founder and editor at large of Data Center Knowledge, and has been reporting on the data center sector since 2000. He has tracked the growing impact of high-density computing on the power and cooling of data centers, and the resulting push for improved energy efficiency in these facilities.