Equinix Expands to Dubai, Sees Growth for Emirates

A view of Dubai at night. Equinix will be entering the Dubai market, citing growth in the region. (Photo: Kamel Lebtahi via Flickr)

Equinix is expanding to Dubai. The colo market leader continues its international growth with a deal that suggests growth ahead for the Dubai/UAE market: an alliance, a new facility, and a big stake in a new market for the company.

Equinix has entered into an alliance with Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company PJSC to deliver data center and interconnection services to customers in the Middle east. The alliance will result in the creation of the first world-class, carrier neutral hub in the region. Equinix also acquired a newly-built facility in Dubai, with 44,000 square feet of capacity, room for approximately 650 cabinets. Equinix expects an investment of US$40 million on this acquisition when all is said and done, including future upgrades and expansion.

The first phase of the new Dubai facility is expected to complete January 1, 2013. Investment in the infrastructure in the UAE is expected to accelerate growth for businesses in the area, as infrastructure investments are usually a major boost to the overall business environment.

Emerging as Key Gateway

“The Middle East continues to strengthen its position as an important business hub and we are seeing increased demand from our customers for data center services across the region,” said Eric Schwartz, president, Equinix EMEA. “We see Dubai and the UAE as a key business gateway and are excited to open a new data center in the area to help facilitate growth.”

Customers of both companies looking to expand internationally will benefit from close proximity to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and regional market, as well as have the opportunity to connect to more than 4,000 customers across Platform Equinix.

Equinix generally needs no introduction – the massive data center services and interconnection provider connects more than 4,000 companies directly to their customers and partners inside a large, geographically diverse footprint of data centers.

Emirates Integrated and Telecommunications Group, which we’ll refer to going forward as “du” like their DFM ticker symbol, is more likely less familiar to Data Center Knowledge’s readers. Du  opened for business in 2006. It offers mobile and fixed telephony, broadband connectivity and IPTV services to individuals, homes and businesses. It also provides carrier services for businesses and satellite up/downlink services for TV broadcasters. It employs over 2,000 people from over 60 countries – allowing it to serve customers in a variety of languages, mirroring the cultural diversity of its nation. By the end of Q2 2012, it was serving more than 5.7 million people and over 50,000 businesses.

datamena: Interconnection Brand

It also recently announced the datamena brand. datamena is a carrier-neutral transit and content hub that provides an interconnection platform for international carriers, content and service providers in the Middle East. datamena constitutes a transit zone, which allows international customers to host and distribute content, and to trade data capacity in a cost effective way. datamena services will only be available in the data centers in the alliance. It plans to invest deeply in datamena over time.

Through this alliance, du will be able to offer network, interconnection and data center services to its existing and growing UAE customer base. “Many companies are looking to expand their operations into and out of the area, and we will be working with du to provide the connectivity and services they require to succeed,” said Schwartz in the release.

“The alliance enables our customers to expand their digital footprint from a location where some of the fastest-growing markets in the world intersect,” said Osman Sultan, CEO for du. “The introduction of datamena and a carrier-neutral data center will act as a catalyst for the next stage of internet development in the region. This resonates with the UAE’s vision of enhancing its role as a regional business hub and to be one of the best places to do business in the world.”

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About the Author

Jason Verge is an Editor/Industry Analyst on the Data Center Knowledge team with a strong background in the data center and Web hosting industries. In the past he’s covered all things Internet Infrastructure, including cloud (IaaS, PaaS and SaaS), mass market hosting, managed hosting, enterprise IT spending trends and M&A. He writes about a range of topics at DCK, with an emphasis on cloud hosting.

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