Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Developing Data Centers to Host India's Rapidly Rising Data Capacity

The partnership between Web Werks Data Centers and Iron Mountain Data Centers could go a long way towards addressing data hosting and security exigencies of enterprises

Published: Oct 28, 2021 12:26:41 PM IST

Developing Data Centers to Host India's Rapidly Rising Data Capacity

The pandemic became a catalyst for digital transformations; it forced enterprises to adopt technology, automate and manage data remotely. Yet even before this deep disruptor, data centers and cloud computing already emerged as the backbones of the global economy. Especially in India, with its rapidly growing critical IT load, the demand for data center capacity had already begun to take off.

A leader in the domain, Web Werks Data Centers is one of India’s biggest data center service providers, offering solutions to enterprises, SMEs, and startups. With three operating data centers, one each in Mumbai, Pune, and Noida, and five upcoming projects in Mumbai, NCR, Chennai, Bengaluru, and Hyderabad, it is India’s leading managed hosting and cloud solutions provider. The company’s facilities are all high-density, hyper-scale, and AI-powered and deliver best-in-class service support and up-time.

In an exciting development for the space, earlier this year, Web Werks entered into a joint venture agreement with Iron Mountain Data Centers, a leading provider of data center and colocation services with a global portfolio, which includes hyperscale-ready, strategic edge, and underground data centers. A trusted guardian for more than 225,000 customers including 95% of the Fortune 1000, Iron Mountain has invested USD 150 mn in primary equity of Web Werks.

To explore the potential of data centers in India and what this joint venture would mean for the technology ecosystem, CNBC TV18, Web Werks Data Centers and Iron Mountain Data Centers present ‘The Data Centric’.

The pandemic pushed a lot of small, medium, and large organizations to start their digital journey or move further along the road to digitization. Enterprises with on-prem equipment found their operations reaching a standstill due to the lockdowns and took a call to move to a data center. Web Werks witnessed a great influx of new customers alongside augmented demands from existing customers. “We not only welcomed customers in but also arranged logistics for them during the pandemic,” recalls Nikhil Rathi, Founder & CEO, Web Werks.

Commenting on the joint venture, he said, “Web Werks was a purely local play. We served only the Indian market, per se. Now, the tie-up with Iron Mountain gives us access to 15 other data centers, across three continents – the US, Europe, and Singapore. Additionally, they are on an expansion spree and as they add more customers, we gain access to that audience and can enable them to expand into India. That’s a huge opportunity.”

Sharing Iron Mountain’s perspective, William Meaney, Global CEO, Iron Mountain, said, “India has been a huge and attractive market for us and we have been figuring out the right entry opportunity for at least 5-6 years before we tied up with Web Werks. I’ve been personally involved, making multiple trips to India, in addition to our data center team. Web Werks had a great footprint, high-quality assets, and a high level of interconnectivity. More importantly, they have the entrepreneurial skills, share similar ethical values, and were a good cultural fit in terms of the way we like to serve customers.”

He added, “When we started looking at India, it had a critical IT load of about 200 MW; in 5 years, that’s gone to just short of 450 MW and we expect it to triple over the next 3-4 years. We believe that the demand for data center capacity will take off soon.”

Nikhil Rathi endorsed the view that India is an underserved market right now. “In the future, we’re looking at setting up multiple larger data centers, catering to hyperscale customers, apart from enterprise, and going from the current 120 MW to 200, 300, or 400 MW. We’re excited to serve India’s insatiable demand for data.”

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