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Q&A: Aim for a SEA data centre hub

Zafar Anjum | July 10, 2013
There is a unique opportunity for the various emerging markets to pool their resources and collaborate to form a South East Asian data centre hub, says CEO of CSF Group Adrian Yong.

Most companies should weigh all their options before expanding their operations anywhere. Not just within Singapore. Singapore is very attractive for its ease of doing business, its competitive pricing for certain infrastructures and its secured and safe environment. Undoubtedly, the high cost of living and rising cost of real estate and power is a deterrent as well.

For businesses that are looking at multiple sites and presence in some of the fastest growing markets in the region, it makes more sense to leverage on the pros of other countries in the region if you are considering expanding and establishing a network of data centres.

I feel that a lot of companies look at Singapore as the only feasible choice in this region for hosting data due to its stability, and for some MNCs, its perceived status as a friend of the US also contributes to its popularity. Moreover, Singapore is now the "de-facto" regional financial hub.

What should companies keep in mind when they decide to collocate in different parts of this region?

Skilled resources with the ability to speak English, ease of doing business, cost of doing business, availability of infrastructure, government compliance and regulations, standards and policies of the different providers.

How do you see the data centre business finally growing in the region? What shape will it take?

The data centre industry is growing in leaps and bounds. According to research firm Canalys, the data centre infrastructure investments are expected to grow five percent annually till 2016, when it will be worth US$152 billion. The APAC region is expected to lead the charge for growth and will account for a quarter of worldwide data centre infrastructure by 2016.

I believe that as the industry grows in the region, it is likely to see investments in higher quality infrastructure, purpose built for cloud optimisation. It is also likely that country specific data centre space providers are likely to expand in other countries in the region and will offer multi-location tenant agreements.

Higher uptime is also likely to be promised and we will see more data centres making the push to achieve internationally recognised certification, such as Uptime Institute's certification of design documents, so as to be more appealing to MNCs.


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