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An Equinix data centre in Singapore

Equinix has added two Mumbai data centres to its flagship platform after completing the acquisition of GPX Global Systems’ India operations, officially planting a flag in one of the fastest-growing countries for server-hosting facilities.

Under the deal first announced in August of last year, US giant Equinix paid $161 million for local developer GPX’s India business, which consists of a connected campus of two data centres, now dubbed Equinix MB1 and MB2, supplying a combined 50,000 square feet (4,700 square metres) of co-location space.

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The campus provides network users in India with access to Equinix’ menu of cloud services — including the country’s only direct connect nodes for AWS, Google Cloud and Oracle Cloud — and will add more than 90,000 square feet of co-location space to Platform Equinix’s portfolio of more than 230 data centres across 65 metros and 27 countries when fully built, the company said Wednesday in a release.

“India presents enormous opportunities for digital leaders in Asia Pacific,” said Jeremy Deutsch, president of Equinix Asia Pacific. “Bringing Platform Equinix to India not only solidifies Equinix’s position as the leading digital infrastructure provider in Asia Pacific, but also provides a new option to local enterprises and multinationals operating in India to interconnect and manage their digital infrastructure in Mumbai.”

Full-Spectrum Service

Equinix, which is known for its co-location services which make it easier for corporate clients to migrate their applications to cloud environments, plans to introduce the full range of its interconnection and digital infrastructure services at the Mumbai data centres. That upgrade will let clients in India connect to over 1,800 networks and 3,000 cloud and IT service providers, through Platform Equinix upon completion of the business integration.

Manoj Paul - equinix

Manoj Paul will lead Equinix India

Existing GPX customers will gain access to Platform Equinix’s service menu, which enables connections between private and public cloud systems across networks, to allow creation of hybrid architectures. Among the industry players relying on the company’s digital infrastructure is Chinese smartphone maker Oppo, which uses MB2 to support its critical IT operations in India, including the app store, local website and end-user data.

Equinix India will be led by managing director Manoj Paul, a GPX veteran who previously spent more than a decade at Indian telecom Bharti Airtel, where his last role was chief operating officer of enterprises for the western region.

Office Investment

India’s digital economy is forecast to grow at a compound annual rate of 21 percent and reach $2 trillion by 2030, Equinix said, citing research by consultancy Frost & Sullivan.

“Digital adoption in India has become a strategic priority for the government as well as enterprises,” said Nishchal Khorana, vice president and global programme leader for ICT at Frost & Sullivan. “Indian government’s initiatives for building a self-reliant India are expected to further catalyse digital adoption.”

India Powers Up

The Indian data centre industry’s power capacity is expected to more than double to 1,007 megawatts by 2023 from its existing level of 447MW, according to a May report by JLL.

“Mumbai and Chennai are expected to drive 73 percent of the sector’s total capacity addition during 2021-23, while other cities like Hyderabad and Delhi NCR will emerge as new hotspots,” the property consultancy said.

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In the last six months, Singapore-based Princeton Digital Group began development of a 48MW multi-storey data centre campus in Navi Mumbai, while SGX-listed Ascendas India Trust said it would invest $162 million to develop and operate the first of two buildings planned for the REIT’s inaugural data centre campus, also in Navi Mumbai.

In July, asset management giant Brookfield and Digital Realty, the world’s largest data centre trust, announced the creation of a joint venture to develop, own and operate data centres in India under the brand name BAM Digital Realty.

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