PAG Real Estate & Kris Kumar to launch a New Digital Infrastructure Venture

PAG Real Estate, a leading Asia-focused private investment manager, and Kris Kumar have launched a regional platform to capitalise on the rapidly growing demand for digital infrastructure in Asia.

Kris is a globally recognised pioneering figure in digital infrastructure investment segment. PAG Real Estate is one of Asia’s largest and most experienced real estate investment platforms. Founded in 1997 as Secured Capital Japan, it has invested more than $33 billion in Asia.

The new company will address the rapidly expanding demand for experienced skillsets and risk-managed capital allocation in the acquisition, development, ownership and operation of digital infrastructure assets.

The company will focus on colocation, cloud, hyperscale and enterprise data centers as well as network and fiber assets in the Asia-Pacific region, and will leverage PAG’s experience in datacenter assets and landholdings. PAG Real Estate has approximately US$2 billion in investments in the sector, with well-laid plans to invest US$10 billion over the short to medium term.

Kris will assume the role of Chairman of this company, which is expected to rapidly develop into one of the region’s pre-eminent digital infrastructure investors and operators. Several experienced senior executives are expected to join the company and the business will be structured and branded to commence operations in September.

The company will build on PAG’s operating and investment experience and Kris’s well-established track record of building and leading successful, high-growth digital infrastructure companies in the Asia Pacific region.

Among his many roles, Kris has served as the founding executive and regional head of Asia-Pacific for Digital Realty; the founder and CEO of Bridge Data Centres, and the Vice Chairman of Chindata Group Holdings post the merger of Bridge Data Centres with Chindata, which listed on the NASDAQ (CD) in September 2020.

“With PAG’s entrepreneurial approach, decades of experience, superior investment track record and ready access to a competitive cost of capital, my perennial enthusiasm for the sector quickly resurfaced, to lift me out of my year-long retirement,” said Kris. “I am looking forward to helping build a platform company on the strong foundation of an already-substantive investment by PAG in the sector over the last four years. I strongly believe in our vision of becoming a diligent, customer-focused, and profitable digital infrastructure investor/operator in the region. We are assembling a strong team with a diverse skill set and best-in-class investment and operational experience, to execute this vision.”

The team expects to focus efforts on Japan, Australia, and other Asian markets.

“Kris is an icon in the digital infrastructure industry, and we are very excited to work with him to create this platform company that will serve the infrastructure needs of this new digital era that we live in,” said PAG President Jon-Paul Toppino. “With his experience and PAG’s expertise in development and investment, we are looking forward to building a robust platform that will stand the test of time.”

Data usage around the world continues to expand, with demand driven by an explosion in mobile data usage, streaming and cloud services. The Asian data centre market is currently underserved, particularly in the hyperscale end of the market, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 10-12 per cent till 2024.

Venkatesh Ganesh

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