VMware Launches Second UK Data Center for Cloud Services

Chessington data center is a step toward the plan to light up 10 vCloud Hybrid Service data centers by the year's end.

Jason Verge

July 24, 2014

2 Min Read
Bill Fathers
Bill Fathers, VMware’s former GM of cloud services, announcing vCloud Air public cloud at a press conference in the company’s Palo Alto, California, headquarters in 2013 (Photo: VMware)

Continuing the build out of its cloud services infrastructure VMware has established a second UK data center.

Traditionally a packaged software company, VMware has recently been expanding its role as cloud services provider.  This is the seventh data center for its vCloud Hybrid Service. It also recently opened a cloud data center in New Jersey and inked a deal with SoftBank to bring its vCloud Hybrid Service to Japan earlier this month.

VMware uses colocation providers to host its cloud infrastructure.

The company recently conducted a poll in the UK, which revealed that 86 percent of respondents thought it was important to ensure their business critical data was stored within the country's borders. These "data sovereignty" needs were a major driver for expanding data center capacity in the UK.

VMware opened up its first vCloud Hybrid data center in England last February. The first one was located in Slough (just outside of London) , and the new one is in nearby Chessington.

VMware’s focus is on hybrid deployments – not necessarily the mixing of on-premises and cloud, but providing customers the flexibility to deploy infrastructure however they want to, on-premise in the cloud or both.

The UK data centers provide a hosted complement to private VMware cloud infrastructures there.

The company is seeing strong demand for the service in Europe overall, noted Gavin Jackson, vice president and general manager, EMEA Cloud Services, in an interview. In its most recent earnings, VMware reported close to 80 percent growth for the hosted service year over year. The service is new, so the growth is from a small base.

“Customer research supports the need for a true hybrid cloud solution which can be fully integrated within an organization’s private cloud,” said Jackson. “It also highlights data sovereignty as having a large influence in whether organizations do move to the public cloud.”

The company is relying on multi-tenant data center providers to expand its as-a-service offerings. “We are not at a scale where we buy or build our own data centers,” said Angelos Kottas, director of product marketing for the cloud services. “Today our objective is not to drive down cost to operate. Our objective is to grow rapidly.”

VMware is also exploring a hybrid cloud service with the cloud computing branch of China Telecom under the brand name CT E-Surfing Hybrid Cloud Services. China Telecom, according to VMware, serves the largest Internet user base in the country.

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