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2021: These are the World’s Largest Data Center Colocation Providers

These 15 companies together account for half of the $54 billion global colocation market.

After years of consolidation, the 15 largest data center colocation providers in the world own about half of the market. The remaining half is extremely fragmented, which means more consolidation will follow.

As mergers and acquisitions continue – and accelerate, fueled by an unprecedented amount of investor appetite – the ranking of the largest players in the space may eventually change.

As of today, the largest data center colocation provider in the world is Equinix, accounting for 11 percent of the $54 billion market, according to the latest global leaderboard by Structure Research, an analyst firm that tracks the internet infrastructure services market.

Following Equinix is Digital Realty, with 8 percent market share, and following Digital is China Telecom, with 6 percent market share.

It’s important to note that China Telecom is one of five Chinese companies on the leaderboard (also China Unicom, China Mobile, GDS, and 21Vianet), all of whom do business primarily in China. China’s market is so vast that these providers can stay mostly domestic (with some international presence) and still have huge share of the global market.

China’s protectionist regulatory policy makes it extremely difficult for foreign companies to compete in the country’s vast data center market, and international players’ interest in China has waned. As a result, Chinese hyperscalers’ explosive growth in recent years has driven huge growth for Chinese companies that build and operate data centers for the likes of Alibaba and Tencent.

That said, here they are, the world’s 15 largest data center colocation providers, which together account for about 50 percent of the global market, ranked by Structure Research as part of its latest report on the global colocation and interconnection market:

1. Equinix

  • Market share: 11.1 percent
  • Headquarters: Redwood City, California

Getty ImagesEquinix

2. Digital Realty Trust

  • Market share: 7.6 percent
  • Headquarters: Austin, Texas

Digital Realty TrustDigital Realty

3. China Telecom

  • Market share: 6.1 percent
  • Headquarters: Beijing, China

(China Photos/Getty Images)china telecom hq.png


  • Market share: 4.3 percent
  • Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan

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5. China Unicom

  • Market share: 4.2 percent
  • Headquarters: Beijing, China

(AFP via Getty Images)china unicom logo.png

6. China Mobile

  •  Market share: 2.1 percent
  • Headquarters: Beijing, China

(PAU BARRENA/AFP via Getty Images)china mobile logo.png

7. CyrusOne

  • Market share: 1.9 percent
  • Headquarters: Dallas, Texas

CyrusOnecyrusone sterling va.png

8. KDDI Telehouse

  • Market share: 1.9 percent
  • Headquarters: Tokyo, Japan

(Getty Images)telehouse paris DC.png

9. GDS

  • Market share: 1.6 percent
  • Headquarters: Shanghai, China

gds shanghai.png

10. Global Switch

  • Market share: 1.4 percent
  • Headquarters: London, UK

Getty Imagesglobal switch canary wharf getty.png

11. 21Vianet

  • Market share: 1.4 percent
  • Headquarters: Beijing, China

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12. CoreSite

  • Market share: 1.3 percent
  • Headquarters: Denver, Colorado

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13: Cyxtera

  • Market share: 1.2 percent
  • Headquarters: Coral Gables, Florida


14: Lumen (formerly CenturyLink)

  • Market share: 1.1 percent
  • Headquarters: Monroe, Louisiana


15: Flexential

  • Market share: 1.1 percent
  • Headquarters: Charlotte, North Carolina


TAGS: Colocation
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