Aligned secures $1bn fund of sustainably-linked credit
Dallas, Texas-based data centre colocation and infrastructure operator has secured a $1bn line of credit, linked to sustainable operating practices. The loan is the first of its kind in the US data centre market, in addition to being one of the biggest credit facilities ever raised in the industry.
The goals in question involve a commitment to match 100% of Aligned’s annual energy consumption to zero-carbon renewable energy by 2024, a commitment to transparent and continual improvement with regard to its ESG goals, and an emphasis on reaching a position as an industry leader for workplace safety.
“Aligned’s latest sustainability-linked financing accelerates our goal to set a best-in-class example for the data centre industry with respect to environmentally and socially sustainable growth,” commented , CFO of Aligned in a press release. “Sustainable practices and principles permeate every facet of Aligned’s organisation; aligning these initiatives with our financing further demonstrates an industry-leading commitment to environmental stewardship.”
ING has reportedly taken on the role of sustainability coordinator in the deal, which involves a $650mn term loan, a $100mn delayed draw term loan and a $250mn revolving credit facility.
TD Securities also served as the deal’s administrative agent, and Goldman Sachs served as the syndication agent.
“As experts in sustainable finance, ING identified Aligned's potential early on as a leader committed to solving sustainability challenges associated with data centre infrastructure,” added Regional Head for Technology, Media & Telecom, ING Americas. “Following the company’s rapid growth over the last few years, ING was able to bring its deep expertise in the sector and sustainable finance to be named the sustainability coordinator for this landmark deal, a first of its kind.”
In H1 2020, Aligned also announced plans to match 100% of the energy usage from its IT loads across its data centre portfolio with renewable energy purchasing.
“I couldn’t be prouder of our team’s achievements and operational strength, culminating in an ability to continue championing a slew of firsts for the data center industry,” says , CEO, Aligned. “That sentiment is recognised and echoed in this latest and unprecedented round of financing, which provides Aligned the ability to keep expanding our data centre portfolio. This includes land acquisition in key U.S. and international regions to address the heightened data centre demand of our marquee clients, as well as expediting the expansion of existing data centre campuses.”
LCL acquires ENGIE Solutions data centre in Gembloux
The data centre company LCL has announced today that it has acquired the ENGIE solutions data centre in Gembloux, Belgium through the acquisition of Cofely data solutions. The new facility, called Wallonia One, is the company’s first facility in Wallonia. As part of the agreement, LCL will take over the management of the facility’s employees as well as the data centre itself. The value of the acquisition is undisclosed.
LCL says that Wallonia One is its fifth data centre in the Belgian market and its second acquisition, after purchasing the Atos data centre in Huizingen in April last year. Laurens van Reijen, CEO of LCL, said: “With this fifth data centre, we are increasing our presence on the market. Gembloux is located in the heart of the Walloon economy. As a result, LCL Wallonia One offers excellent connection possibilities for the business sites and parks throughout Wallonia.
“Thanks to our other strategic sites located in the four corners of the Brussels and Antwerp peripheries, we can ensure that any company will have close links with other regions in our country”, van Reijen said.
Four employees under a fixed contract with Cofely Data Solutions will be joining the LCL team for the acquisition. Remaining part of the LCL Wallonia One, the employees will be under the leadership of their current manager, Nicolas Coppée, LCL said.
“We warmly welcome our four new colleagues and their support will be effectively integrated,” said Laurens van Reijen. “LCL is still strongly driven by service and quality. We intend not only to build synergies between our five data centres but also to introduce some innovations. Our current team of 37 employees is specialised in data centre services. So this is a win-win-win operation: for the customers of data centres, for ENGIE Solutions, and for LCL”.
Wallonia One’s “solar park”
LCL also says that the Wallonia One data centre features a solar park to provide power for the facility. The park includes 2,000 photovoltaic panels which generate 1MW of electricity, LCL claims. The centre also has a low Power Usage Effectiveness (PUE) rating of 1.25, in line with the company’s sustainability and efficiency objectives.
Committed to making all of its data centres carbon-neutral by 2030, LCL has created the “Climate Neutral Data Centre Pact” across Europe, which consists of 24 companies and 17 associations.
In addition to Wallonia One, LCL and ENGIE Solutions have also concluded a collaboration agreement, thus enabling ENGIE Solutions to build new data centres for LCL. There are also plans for ENGIE Solutions to advise LCL on energy efficiency, given ENGIE’s experience in such projects.