Credit Thaw Boosts Data Center Construction

Data center companies are finding it easier to raise capital for data center construction, which is boosting business for companies like Fortress International Group (FIGI).

Data center companies are finding it easier to raise capital for data center construction, which is helping business for companies in engineering and construction management. That's the word from Fortress International Group (FIGI) which said today that a surge in data center construction has helped it win six contracts totaling $39.4 million in recent weeks.

"Our private sector project wins are the direct result of the credit markets opening up in our sector," said Fortress Chief Executive Officer Thomas Rosato. "Capital spending has been very slow since October of 2008. We are now beginning to see our capacity-constrained data center customers executing their facilities expansion plans to meet pent up demand. The credit markets are responding favorably to this segment and we expect to see increased project spending over the next few quarters."

Fortress' new contracts included four design and construction projects for two colocation customers totaling $36.4 million in revenue over the next eight months with projects. The facilities will be located in Chicago, Toronto and Atlanta. Fortress said it was also awarded a three-year, $2.7 million facility management contract to commission and service multiple containerized data center modules.

There was also a smaller deal that could lead to larger revenue down the line. Fortress said its technology consulting division has been selected to assist the U.S. Social Security Administration to develop and design their new data center in Baltimore. The initial contract is for $300,000, but Fortress said that due to the size and complexity of the $750 million project, it "believes that its involvement will evolve from this initial contract."

The news boosted the stock of Fortress, which is traded on NASDAQ. Shares of Fortress jumped from 42 cents to 75 cents in mid-afternoon trading, a gain of about 80 percent.

Fortress International operates a portfolio of companies that design and build mission-critical facilities, including notably Total Site Solutions (TSS). Fortress provides consulting and engineering, construction management and 24/7/365 site services for the world's most technology dependent organizations.

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