Q3 news roundup – data centres, M&As and cybersecurity

The third quarter of the year has been flooded with news about data centres, M&As and industry appointments.

Just before entering the final quarter of 2019, here is a list of news roundups that could not be missed.

Digital Realty is looking to acquire CyrusOne

A Bloomberg report revealed that Digital Realty has set its eyes on the possible acquisition of CyrusOne, according to people that are familiar with the matter.

CyrusOne has a total of 48 data centres in the U.S., U.K., Singapore and Germany, providing mission-critical data centres that ensure the continued operation of IT infrastructure for approximately 1,000 customers.

MRI Software acquires AI real estate firm LEVERTON

MRI Software announced that it has acquired artificial intelligence-powered data extraction solutions company LEVERTON.

“The acquisition of LEVERTON brings a true innovator and global PropTech leader into the MRI family, with expertise in the application of AI to real estate data collection, management, and analytics,” said Patrick Ghilani, MRI’s Chief Executive Officer.

“Going forward, we will incorporate AI-driven ‘LEVERTON intelligence’ into the very fabric of MRI’s DNA, enhancing our singular customer experience by enabling clients throughout the world to tap into data across the MRI ecosystem. The result: smarter business solutions that generate fresh and powerful insights.”

HPE teamed up with NASA to build new supercomputer to support future human mission to moon

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has custom-designed a new supercomputer for NASA’s Ames Research Centre to support modelling and simulations of entry, descent, and landing (EDL) for the agency’s missions and Artemis program, a mission to land the next humans on the lunar South Pole region by 2024.

The new supercomputer, which NASA Ames has named “Aitken,” is an initial development of a four-year, multi-phase collaboration between HPE and NASA Ames.


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“HPE has a longstanding collaboration with NASA Ames, and together, we continue to build innovative HPC technologies to fuel space and science discovery that increase overall efficiency and reduce costs,” said Bill Mannel, vice president and general manager, HPC and AI, at HPE.

“We are honoured to have designed the new Aitken supercomputer and power capabilities for humanity’s next mission to the moon.”

Amazon acquires start-up storage company E8 Storage

Amazon has acquired Israeli-based flash storage startup E8 Storage, according to multiple reports, and its employees are set to join public cloud firm Amazon Web Services.

Founded in 2014, E8 Storage provides rack-scale flash storage for the enterprise and software-defined cloud, headquartered in San Francisco Bay Area, Silicon Valley, West Coast.

Telia’s CEO Johan Dennelind steps down as Cristian Luiga steps as acting CEO

Telia Company’s Board of Directors has appointed Christian Luiga acting President and CEO of Telia Company, due to Johan Dennelind handing in his resignation as President and CEO of Telia Company in early August.

Prior to this position, Luiga was Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Telia Company, and joined the mobile network operator company in 2009.

Douglas Lubbe has been appointed acting CFO in Telia Company. His most recent position was CFO of Telia Sweden.

“Dennelind who announced his resignation as President and CEO of Telia Company in early August will now leave his position but will remain at the company’s disposal until he leaves the company during 2020,” said the company in a written statement.

“He will act as an advisor in the closing of the acquisition of Bonnier Broadcasting and in other important company issues.”

DOCOMO joins 5G alliance for connected industries and automation

NTT DOCOMO, INC. announced that it has joined the 5G Alliance for Connected Industries and Automation (5G-ACIA) with the aim of further advancing the use of 5G technology in the manufacturing sector.

Dr. Hiroshi Nakamura, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, NTT DOCOMO commented, “We are very pleased to have become a member of 5G-ACIA. NTT DOCOMO has been collaborating with many partners in the manufacturing sector to co-create 5G services through activities such as the ‘DOCOMO 5G Open Partner Program’ and ‘DOCOMO 5G Open LabTM’.

“We are looking forward to collaborating with 5G-ACIA to accelerate the expansion of the 5G global ecosystem in this industry sector.”

Extreme Networks appointed official Wi-Fi provider to National Football League

Extreme Networks (Nasdaq: EXTR) announced it has renewed its technology partnership with the National Football League (NFL).

As the Official Wi-Fi Solutions Provider to the NFL, Extreme will provide Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi analytics solutions for the next three football seasons and two Super Bowls: Super Bowl LIV on February 2, 2020 in Miami, and Super Bowl LV on February 7, 2021 in Tampa.

“Mobile connectivity is at the core of today’s stadium experience and NFL teams need to build game day experiences with the “second screen” in mind,” said Norman Rice, Chief Marketing, Development, and Product Operations Officer, Extreme Networks.

Colt to expand enterprise offering via on-demand connectivity to Google Cloud Platform globally

Colt Technology Services has announced that it will enable enterprises direct, on-demand connections to Google Cloud globally.

Through the use of Colt’s Dedicated Cloud Access (DCA) offering powered by the Colt IQ Network, the company revealed that its customers can connect from enterprise buildings or data centres to their Google Cloud instances with bandwidth.

Colt’s Vice President Product Portfolio, Peter Coppens said: “Facilitating organisations migration and utilisation of the cloud has been a significant priority for Colt over the past few years.

“This extension of our proposition to allow organisations to connect not only directly to Google Cloud, but also have the connectivity delivered in real-time, ensures Colt can tangibly drive enterprises digital transformations.

Shell and PDENH are investing in Dutch sustainable data centre technology scaleup Asperitas

Asperitas has attracted an investment from Shell Ventures, the corporate venture arm of Shell, and the Participation Fund for Sustainable Economy North Holland (PDENH).

The investment, led by Shell Ventures, supports the acceleration of Asperitas’ mission to enable sustainable datacentres on a global scale.

“Shell Ventures and PDENH’s investment supports us on our mission to enable sustainable datacentres on a large and global scale,” said Rolf Brink, CEO, Asperitas.

“We are building a long-term strategic partnership with Shell, including the development of liquids for our technology, which has already led to optimisations.”

Top cloud colocation providers to add 14 million sq ft of data centre capacity in 2019

The world’s leading cloud and colocation providers plan to add 14 million sq ft of new data centre capacity in 2019, according to the IHS Markit tracking data.

IHS Markit is currently tracking 135 new data centre building and expansion projects set to open in 2019, with these projects expected to add 14 million sq ft of new capacity.

An additional 4.5 million sq ft of capacity has been announced for 1st-half 2020. This growth follows 3.6 million sq ft of extra capacity added worldwide in 2nd-half 2018, when 52 new data centre building and expansion projects came online.

The top five cloud providers by IT-operated data centre capacity are Google with 13.7 million sq ft, Amazon with 12.4 million, Microsoft with 10.7 million, IBM with 3.4 million and Tencent with 2 million, according to IHS Markit.

Businesses are getting on top of IT downtime costs

Organisations are getting better at understanding what IT downtime costs their business, according to research from Databarracks.

Data taken from the company’s Data Health Check survey reveals less than one in five organisations (19%) do not know how much IT downtime costs their business. This is down from over a third, (35%) In 2017.

Peter Groucutt, managing director of Databarracks, said: “Evidence has historically suggested organisations struggle to consider costs, but we’re now seeing companies thinking much more broadly about the financial impact of IT-related downtime.”

Google Hamina data centre in Finland will see 1,700 builders working on construction

Tech giant Google announced it has begun construction of a new data centre facility in the Southern Finland city of Hamina.

Construction of the data centre will see the employment of 1,500-1,700 people, with the construction of the facility predicted to take about two years.

Once the data centre facility is completed, the company will employ around 30 new tech workers.

Scale Computing and Acronis form technology partnership for enhanced data protection

Edge computing company Scale Computing and cyber protection company Acronis announced an OEM partnership, offering Acronis Backup to customers through Scale Computing channels, delivering archiving, enhanced data protection, disaster recovery, and threat mitigation on the Scale Computing HC3 platform.

“Faced with ever-increasing volumes of data along with the growing threat of ransomware and other malware, IT professionals are under tremendous pressure to protect everything while ensuring production systems aren’t impacted. The good news is that protecting your organisation’s data doesn’t have to be difficult,” said Pat Hurley, Vice President and General Manager, Americas, Acronis.

“With Acronis Backup on Scale Computing HC3, organisations gain a fast, scalable cyber protection solution that won’t consume their limited IT budgets.”

This month, technology companies need to avoid hiding behind a screen to ensure they are the employer of choice for the newest generation entering the world of work

Tech companies warned to develop right approach to secure Generation Z talent

Tech companies need to tailor their recruitment to appeal to changing demographics and generations if they are to get ahead of the skills shortfall across the industry, according to UK cloud provider Memset.

A study has shown that Generation Z (born between 1995 and 2010 and now the biggest generation worldwide) in particular has some very different perspectives on what a good employer looks like.

Annalisa O’Rourke, Chief Operations Officer at Memset comments: “Over the past ten years there has been a major shift in what a career looks like, particularly to the digitally minded generations who have become focused on diversity, social issues and see value in face to face communication.

“If employers are to attract and retain Gen Z it is important, they have clear approaches that align with these mind-sets. Recruiters need to think about how they communicate with these people, attract them to interview and are then able to retain them long term.”

Australia’s data centre floor space grows by more than 11% every year

Australia has progressed to now be one of the four major sub-markets for data centres in Asia alongside Singapore, Hong Kong and Japan, according to reports from BuddeComm.

Both Sydney and Melbourne have developed to become regional hubs for large enterprises across a range of industries.

Iliad and InfraVia announce partnership aimed at accelerating fibre rollouts

The Iliad Group and InfraVia (a French private equity firm specialized in infrastructure) have entered into exclusive talks to set up a partnership aimed at accelerating FTTH rollouts outside very densely populated areas of France (representing around 26 million lines).

As part of the operation, Iliad has set up a special entity to actively manage fibre lines.

“The French market is characterised by high demand for fibre across the whole country,” said Thomas Reynaud, Iliad’s Chief Executive Officer.

“Our partnership with InfraVia is an excellent way of accelerating our rollouts so that Free can offer the best speeds to 26 million households as soon as possible, in line with the objectives of our Odyssey plan.”

Israel makes moves for cloud-based data centre project

The Israeli government has moved ahead with its plans for a cloud-based regional data centre facility that may bring some of the tech industries biggest giants to Israel.

The Finance Ministry’s Government Procurement Administration announced that it was preparing a tender “for the provision of public-platform-based cloud services to the government ministries and additional governmental units.”

iland expands global channel sales with cloud computing tools and new Canadian data centre

Cloud service provider iland has announced that it is expanding its global channel sales program to address substantial partner growth and customer demand for its secure cloud backup, infrastructure and disaster recovery solutions in North America, South America, Asia, Europe, Australia and Africa.

“The iland global partner program serves customers across six continents who are moving to the cloud for the first time or expanding their infrastructure across a complex hybrid cloud environment,” said Koorosh Khashayar, vice president of iland global channels.

“iland provides the tools and expertise to make the migration to the cloud safe, simple and painless, while helping partners open doors to new opportunities and creating new revenue sources with existing customers.”

Symantec could be acquired for $16bn by Permira and Advent International

Cybersecurity company Symantec has been approached by private equity firms Permira and Advent International to buy the company for over $16bn according to people familiar with the matter – reported by penews.

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Permira and Advent International approached Symantec proposing a takeover deal valuing Symantec at $26 to $27 a share that would hand them the company’s consumer operation while preserving the sale of its enterprise business to Broadcom, the report revealed.

Global financial institutions ramp up colocation footprints

Data centre provider Internap (INAP) announced that an unnamed financial services firm has signed a long-term contract extension at its flagship Phoenix data centre.

Under the terms of the renewal for power and colocation services until June 2028, the tenant’s customers will have access to a minimum of around 2 megawatts during the contract term, said INAP.

Elsewhere, Equinix LD4 was selected by FBS as the most suitable location to build out their financial trading platform as well as allow adequate expansion for future growth.

A spokesperson told Data Economy: “The environment consumes 3 racks which is more or less fully populated with infrastructure predominantly servers, so is highly dense. The contract forms part of a 3-year contract.”

Amazon spends $118m on land acquisition in Virginia

Amazon bought 90 acres in two plots of land in Loudoun County, Virginia, and paid $118m for the land that had been valued at $19.7m, according to the County records office.

Macquarie Telecom looks to public cloud

Macquarie Telecom plans to launch a public cloud service to its hosting business, in a bid to boost its customer numbers.

Japanese and Nordic partners team up with MegaFon to set up trans-Arctic telecom firm

Japanese and Nordic partners has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Russia’s telecom giant MegaFon, to set up trans-Arctic telecom company.

Russia plans to deploy data centre facility in the Far-East

The Russian federal Ministry of Communications and the government of the Primorye region are looking at the possibilities of launching a data centre in the Far-East of the country.

Discussions surrounding the data centre is set to also be carried out with state-owned corporations and foreign companies based in the Asian-Pacific region.

Macquarie Group set to raise $675m for renewable infrastructure sector

Macquarie Group is raising $675.5m in equity to support increased investment in the renewables, technology and infrastructure sectors, according to reports from The Financial Times.

US hits at Huawei with blacklist of R&D centres

The U.S. has blacklisted more than 20% of Huawei Technologies’ global R&D and innovation centres in its latest clampdown on the Chinese tech giant. Huawei’s R&D investment in 2018 exceeds $15bn.

China gets ready for regional data centre for SKA

The construction of the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), the world’s largest astronomical device, is expected to start next year.

The Square Kilometre Array is an intergovernmental radio telescope project proposed to be built in Australia and South Africa, to explore the universe.

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