Chi­nese con­sor­tium buys 49% stake in UK data firm

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - BUSINESS - By CECILY LIU in Lon­don cecily.liu@mail. chi­nadai­

A Chi­nese con­sor­tium has bought a 49 per­cent stake in Bri­tish data cen­ter com­pany Global Switch for 2.5 bil­lion pounds ($3.09 bil­lion), in a strate­gic move aimed at shar­ing data cen­ter tech­nol­ogy and lo­ca­tions.

The con­sor­tium was set up by data cen­ter com­pany Dai­lyTech Bei­jing, although the ma­jor­ity of the fund­ing comes from Jiangsu Sha­gang Group, China’s largest pri­vate steel­maker.

Wed­nes­day’s deal came as Chi­nese and Western com­pa­nies ex­pand into each other’s mar­kets, cre­at­ing a big de­mand to store data in in­ter- na­tional lo­ca­tions.

The part­ner­ship al­lows both data cen­ter com­pa­nies to fol­low their clients’ ex­pan­sion foot­steps over­seas and help them store data in con­ve­nient lo­ca­tions.

Global Switch has be­gun build­ing data cen­ters in the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion and Sin­ga­pore, us­ing high qual­ity tech­nol­ogy to help Daily-Tech Bei­jing’s clients store data.

John Cor­co­ran, CEO of Global Switch, said the in­vest­ment will help Global Switch’s global ex­pan­sion and, in par­tic­u­lar, help it serve Chi­nese com­pa­nies ex­pand­ing over­seas and Western com­pa­nies grow­ing in China.

Founded in 1998, Global Switch now has 10 data cen- ters in Europe and Asia. The com­pany is owned by the bil­lion­aire Ruben Brothers, who pur­chased it in 2004 for re­port­edly 585 mil­lion pounds, but have in­vested more than 1 bil­lion pounds in ex­pand­ing the busi­ness.

Daily-Tech Bei­jing was founded in 2009 and now owns five data cen­ters in China, pro­vid­ing data stor­age for Chi­nese and multi­na­tional com­pa­nies, in­clud­ing Sch­nei­der Elec­tric, John­son Con­trols, China Tele­com, China Uni­com and China Mo­bile.

“We be­lieve that bring­ing to­gether the high qual­ity data cen­ters and op­er­a­tional ex­cel­lence of Global Switch with the rapidly grow­ing de­mand from Chi­nese cus­tomers cre­ates a perfect match that will de­liver fu­ture growth op­por­tu­ni­ties,” said Li Qiang, pres­i­dent of Daily-Tech Bei­jing.

Alan Bar­rell, en­tre­pre­neur in res­i­dence at the Univer­sity of Cam­bridge’s Judge Busi­ness School, said the part­ner­ship will help Daily-Tech Bei­jing achieve a big­ger in­ter­na­tional reach in data han­dling and stor­age and help Global Switch to grow its busi­ness with the new in­vest­ment.

“There will also be syn­ergy for tech­nol­ogy de­vel­op­ment, to en­able data cen­ters to be­come ever more ef­fi­cient and se­cure and en­hance the qual­ity of their of­fer­ing,” Bar­rell said.

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