Vapor IO gets funding to build US-wide edge data centre network

The company is taking advantage of ‘one hop’ connectivity between fixed line and wireless networks to tap into the growing edge data centre movement after first attacking the Chicago market.

Vapor IO has won Series C funding for its US nationwide network of edge data centres. The round was led by private equity firm Berkshire Partners, with participation from current investor Crown Castle.

The new investment will be used to officially launch the company’s Kinetic Edge colocation and interconnection services, while “rapidly expanding” its footprint of edge data centres, said the firm.

Kinetic Edge offers a new category of colocation built at the intersection of wireless and wireline networks. By deploying micro data centres at the base of cell towers and in nearby wireless aggregation hubs, said Vapor IO, the company expects to be the largest provider of edge data centre colocation services integrated directly into the wireless infrastructure.

“As the concept of edge computing has gone from niche technology to mainstream trend, we have methodically laid the foundation for infrastructure-side edge computing,” said Cole Crawford, founder and CEO of Vapor IO. “Vapor IO is building the largest footprint of interconnected edge data centres and we are rolling out at an accelerated pace.”

Kinetic Edge enables carriers, cloud providers, web scale companies and enterprises to place IT equipment in Kinetic Edge locations – “one hop” from existing 4G LTE and emerging 5G wireless networks.

Beth Hoffman, a managing director at Berkshire Partners, said: “With premier technology, increasing mobile edge demand and a large market opportunity, Vapor IO is poised for impressive growth.”

Vapor IO has deployed multiple Kinetic Edge data centres in Chicago, with plans to have 13 sites underway by the end of 2018, nearly 50 by the end of 2019 and over 100 by the end of 2020, providing US coast-to-coast coverage. Specific cities and more detailed roll-out plans will be announced later this year, said the firm.

The company isn’t going to get it all its own way though, as DataBank has partnered with Vertical Bridge Holdings to deploy micro data centres at the base of communication towers across the US too.