It’s been an exciting, unprecedented, challenging year for the data centre industry. The ongoing effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the precipitous growth of remote work, exponential data generation, and the continued adoption of new, digitally transformative technologies from 5G to edge computing and AI, have all conspired to establish the data centre as the beating heart of the digital world.
The industry has responded heroically, with massive new projects started to meet nigh-insurmountable demand. As cloud adoption, high-density computing, and colocation find themselves in greater demand, here are the top 10 companies offering colocation services worldwide.
1) Digital Realty/Interxion
As the world’s leading supplier of data centre colocation services, it’s virtually impossible to overstate the reach of Digital Realty’s platform. Along with its European subsidiary brand Interxion, Digital Realty owns and operates more than 290 data centres in 47 metros across 24 countries on six continents.
In addition to a combined capacity of more than 440 MW in Europe alone, and a sweeping presence across North America, Digital Realty is also undergoing a significant expansion throughout the APAC Region. In the last year alone, the company has announced new facilities in Singapore, South Korea, and Hong Kong. This rapidly expanding data centre footprint is also being interconnected with dense, carrier-neutral fibre links, as the company builds towards the upcoming launch of the “Fabric of Fabrics.”
Data Centres: 290+
CEO: Bill Stein
Headquarters: San Francisco, California
“We want Digital Realty to become the recognised data centre leader across Asia Pacific” - MARK FONG, VP OF SALES, APAC AND JAPAN, DIGITAL REALTY
With over 220 international business exchange (IBX) data centres in more than 26 countries, Equinix has one of the largest and best-connected data centre footprints of any colocation provider in the industry. Headquartered in Redwood City, California, Equinix has the market’s largest ecosystem, comprising more than 10,000 companies, and delivers a rich ecosystem experience through its hyper-interconnected network of facilities with near-peerless uptime. The company, like many other international collocation leaders, is expanding aggressively into the Indian market, purchasing a two data centre campus in Mumbai earlier this year.
Data Centres: 220+
CEO: Charles J. Meyers
Headquarters: Redwood City, California
“Equinix remains uniquely positioned as traditional technology markets continue to shift to as-a-service consumption models” - Charles Meyers, President, and CEO, Equinix
3) NTT Global Data Centres
Just a few years after the majority of the telco sector dropped their data centre assets like they had the plague, the data centre division of Japanese network operator NTT Communications is still cementing its place among the world’s biggest colocation providers. With a largely APAC-focused portfolio - but a respectable presence in the US following the company’s 2018 acquisition of RagingWire, as well as a sizable footprint in the UK and India - NTT GDC’s global portfolio is poised to grow even more this year. In September, the company announced plans to expand its data centre footprint by 20% across keymarkets, including London, Singapore, Tokyo, and Virginia.
Headquarters: London, UK
Data Centres: 160+
CEO: Bob Pryor
Cyxtera’s platform of more than 60 data centre facilities extends across 29 markets worldwide, Cyxtera is among the world’s leading suppliers of retail colocation space. The company was founded in 2017 from the combination of CenturyLink and Savvis’ data centre portfolios, and is currently focused on the US market, although it does operate facilities in London, Amsterdam, Germany, China, Singapore and Australia.
Headquarters: Coral Gables, Florida
Data Centres: 60+
CEO: Nelson Fonseca
Texan data centre giant CyrusOne owns and operates a sizable portfolio of more than 50 data centres throughout North America, Europe, and South America. Although the company has largely focused on the US and Europe’s larger FLAP-D (Frankfurt, London, Amsterdam, Paris, and Dublin) markets so far, this year, CyrusOne expanded its footprint towards more emerging markets, starting with a 21 MW facility in Madrid.
Headquarters: Dallas, Texas
Data Centres: 50+
CEO: David Ferdman
Owned by Japanese IT solutions firm KDDI, Telehouse’s data centre platform is active across North America but is largely focused on Europe, where the company has multiple facilities in London and Paris - as well as a direct landing station data centre in Marseille connected to the 2Africa subsea cable. In APAC, KDDI/Telehouse operates colocation data centres in established markets like China and Japan, as well as emerging hot spots like Vietnam.
Headquarters: London, UK
Data Centres: 40+
CEO: Masatoshi Nobuhara
Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, Flexential is a colocation, managed services and cloud-hosting data centre operator with a network of almost 40 data centres spread across 20 markets. The majority of the company’s operations are concentrated in the US, although Flexntial has been making successful inroads throughout APAC, as well as in Europe and South America.
Headquarters: Charlotte, North Carolina
Data Centres: 38
CEO: Christopher Downie
8) QTS Realty
QTS Realty’s platform of 28 colocation data centres is divided across the United States, where it operates sites in New Jersey, Northern Virginia, and Silicon Valley, and the Netherlands, where the company has one data centre in Eemshaven and another in Groningen. QTS Realty was acquired earlier this year by US investment giant Blackstone for a lump sum of $10bn.
Headquarters: Overland Park, Kansas
Data Centres: 28
CEO: Chad Williams
One of the world’s most exciting suppliers of hyperscale colocation services, Colt has a platform of 26 data centres worldwide. Historically, Colt has been focused in Europe, its footprint extending from Spain to the Nordics. Currently, Colt is focusing on expanding its APAC operations, fueled by large cash injections from its parent company, Brookfield Asset Management. Earlier this year, Colt announced another hyperscale build - a 45+ MW site in Osaka, Japan. When complete, the company will operate almost 100 MW of data centre capacity throughout the country.
Headquarters: London, UK
Data Centres: 26
CEO: Niclas Sanfridsson
10) Iron Mountain
A byword for security and data protection, document storage firm Iron Mountain has pivoted successfully into the data centre industry over the past decade. The company owns and operates 18 data centres (including a hyper-secure facility built 220 feet underground in Pennsylvania) across three continents. This year, Iron Mountain expanded into the Indian data centre market with a multi-million dollar joint venture in partnership with local operator Web Werks.
Headquarters: Boston, Massachusetts
Data Centres: 15
CEO: William Meaney
Written by Harry Menear