Turbidite building new data centre to break Guam bottleneck

By Harry Menear
The 10 MW facility is expected to come online in 2022 and could be the key to meeting growing demand for interconnection in the South Pacific...

As global demand for data centres and interconnection services grows, the stress placed on developing frontier connection markets is growing with it.

In the South Pacific - a key interconnection region between Asia and the Americas - the need for interconnection points, fibre routes and edge data centre networks is reaching a critical point. Particularly, the tiny island nation of Guam (the closest US territory to the APAC region) expects the demand placed upon its fibre routes to grow significantly over the coming decade. 

“We forecast the demand on the Trans-Pacific route will increase 8-fold between 2021 and 2027. To meet these requirements, numerous new cable systems are being planned,” predicts Jon Hjembo, Director of Data Centre Research at Telegeography. 

Launched at the beginning of March 2021, Turbidite is a new digital infrastructure and data centre firm focused on developing a network of facilities across APAC. The company was founded by industry veterans Bill Barney, former CEO of Global Cloud Xchange, and Wilfred Kwan, and is receiving financial backing from New World Development, a leading property conglomerate that operates out of Hong Kong and China. 

On Monday, Turbidite announced the launch of its first major development, a 10 MW, Tier-III+ carrier-neutral data centre in Guam. The first phase will reportedly deliver 3 MW of power capacity and be operational some time next year. Upon full buildout, the facility will have a total footprint of more than 62,000 square feet of floor space and host around 600 racks. 

In addition, the facility will serve as a landing point for a subsea internet exchange (IX) cable, connecting the island with overseas markets. 

“Over the past year, there has been an increase in connectivity requirements through Guam, which is the lowest latency point of US soil to the growing economies of Asia Pacific,” said Bill Barney, Chief Executive Officer of Turbidite. “Increasingly, tech companies are looking for highly connected and secure carrier-neutral data centers to store their edge nodes. Turbidite Guam will build a central IX for inbound cables destined for Asia.”

The project is the result of a joint development with Prospector Pacific and SK Telecom subsidiary IT&E, which is currently the largest wireless carrier with the widest 4G LTE Network coverage in Guam and the Marianas. 

“We look forward to teaming up with Turbidite to build this long-awaited new facility in Guam,” said Jim Beighley, CEO of Prospector Pacific. “Upon completion, Turbidite Guam will be a main anchor point to release the bottleneck we are currently experiencing in this market, enabling us to provide added value to our existing and prospective customers.”

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