Report: Sydney, Singapore among the world’s biggest data center markets

Sydney and Singapore are among the world’s biggest data center markets.

These findings are according to real estate services company Cushman and Wakefield, which has published its latest report on the global data center market, ranking the world’s best cities for data center facilities in terms of land considerations, ecosystem advantages, and political and regulatory circumstances.

However, the top ten data centre markets are dominated by the US, with Northern Virginia and Chicago ranking first and second in the world respectively. Dallas, Seattle, and New York are other major cities made the list.

Two Asia-Pacific cities made the top ten: Sydney placed third, right in front of Silicon Valley, whereas Singapore came in at fifth place. As the biggest mover in overall rankings, the report attributed Sydney’s leap to third place to “Australia’s ongoing transformation in IT infrastructure”.

Singapore’s position, on the other hand, illustrates the city state’s “strong existing [market], dense fiber, and an array of available services.”

The report also shed light on secondary data center markets where the colocation sector “continues to blossom”, this includes Seoul, which entered the long list for the first time with a 300 MW data center capacity, Jakarta, and Mumbai. Data center markets to watch in APAC include Kuala Lumpur and Chennai.

The report evaluated 1,189 data centers and 48 markets all around the world.

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DCI Data Centers selects former Colt Data Centres Head and CenturyLink Manager Ras Scollay as Senior VP of Business Development

DCI Data Centers has announced the appointment of Ras Scollay as their new Senior Vice President of Business Development in Asia.

The former Head of Sales and Marketing for Colt Data Centre Services and Country Manager for Japan at CenturyLink was selected to continue DCI’s mission to become the preferred partner in the Asia Pacific region for the delivery of secure data center solutions.

“I am pleased to welcome Ras to the DCI Data Centers team,” said Udhay Mathialagan, DCI Chairman and the Managing Director for Brookfield Asset Management.

Ras Scollay, the new Senior Vice President of Business Development in Asia for DCI Data Centers

Mr. Scollay will oversee the development of customer relationships and new opportunities across Asia, aligning with DCI’s strategy to expand into hyperscale markets.

“The expertise of the leadership team coupled with the company’s expansion plans in Asia are unique and will help our customers realise their ambitions across the region,” said Mr. Scollay.

During his 24 years of experience in digital infrastructure, Mr. Scollay launched two new hyperscale data centers in Japan, and acquired land for Colt Data Centres’ expansion into Osaka and Mumbai. Prior to this, Mr. Scollay held roles at CenturyLink in both Japan and Singapore, leading sales and operations.

DCI Data Centers, a fully owned subsidiary of Brookfield Asset Management, aims to expand their presence in Asia, empowered by Brookfield’s $550 billion assets across infrastructure, real estate, and renewable power.

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Explore the latest for cloud and data centers in Singapore

Singapore has one of the most dominant tech industries in Asia, with advancements happening almost daily.

So, what can you expect from a hub market, the downstream opportunities to the edge markets, and the innovation of technology in the space of Cloud Computing, connectivity, cybersecurity and data centers?

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Rapid cloud adoption fuels 100% data center workload revenue growth in Asia Pacific and Japan for Druva

Druva, a leading cloud data protection and management company, announced its data center workload revenue has grown more than 100% in the last twelve months.

Based in California, Druva’s impressive growth can be attributed to its providing support to over 135 enterprises in Asia Pacific and Japan. This includes helping Adani Wilmar in India, Gold Peak in Hong Kong, and NTT Data and UNIADEX in Japan navigate their digital transformation.

“As businesses in Asia Pacific and Japan adopt remote operating models, there is an urgency to adopt new technologies, maintain business continuity and secure organisational and dispersed workforce data,” said Pete Yamasaki, Druva’s Regional Vice President for Asia Pacific and Japan.

It is no surprise by now that businesses are turning to cloud computing to reimagine their operations, especially in the trying times in the pandemic-hit world. And that’s not the only trend, as governments across the world are enforcing data protection regulations with greater stringency to ensure their citizens’ most sensitive details are safe and secure, even on the cloud.

“Regardless of the industry, sector or legacy, companies are turning to the cloud for the scale and technology it has to offer,” added Mr. Yamasaki.

Druva identified more than 700 businesses in Asia Pacific looking to ‘break free from the shackles of the data center and embrace a cloud-first approach for rising data protection needs’, as they ‘move away from investment-heavy and legacy approaches to data protection’.

“Druva’s powerful platform has enabled the region’s expanding businesses to protect data where it is being created – in the cloud – from anywhere with on-demand scalability, robust compliance capabilities and industry-leading security standards,” said Mr. Yamasaki.

To further accelerate Druva’s growth in the region, the company is also expanding its partner program, Druva Compass, to continue to empower digital transformation through enhanced training.

“Customers are increasingly drawn to the public cloud infrastructure as they embark on their digital transformation journey,” said Nathan Lowe, the Managing Director ASI Solutions, a Druva Compass certified partner in Australia.

In the unprecedented COVID-19 situation, Druva’s partners will be critical for the successful deployment of their technology for reliant customers looking to take the digital transformation leap.

“With Druva’s service-oriented model, we can easily add new data sources and make decisions based on our business objectives rather than the restrictions of our legacy backup solution,” said Wai Chung, IT backup administrator for AmorePacific in Hong Kong.

As businesses in Asia Pacific and Japan are managing far more data than two years ago and are being pushed to adopt remote working models under the COVID-19 pandemic, cloud data protection is fast becoming a significant concern to prevent the rising number of threat actors from accessing their data. 

A mid-year report by market intelligence firm IDC projected revenue from cloud systems and services in Asia Pacific to outpace both the Americas and the EMEA region by 2024. Druva Inc.’s latest revenue number serves as strong evidence on the region’s growth potential.

The success of platforms such as Druva once again highlight the importance that businesses place on data protection. Compared to traditional hardware architectures, companies now want security and scalability in the same way that it is being created, on the cloud.

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Discover Japan’s exciting cloud and data center markets

Japan’s cloud and data center markets have an exciting future ahead, with billion dollar investments taking place. So how can you tap into the country’s bright future?

Register for free to join the Japan Cloud and Data Center Market Insights digital event!

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Tech Data acquires tech distribution veteran Innovix to accelerate Asia Pacific expansion

Tech Data, a Fortune 500 company, is set to acquire Innovix Distribution in a move to expand their presence across Asia Pacific.

The addition of Innovix will strengthen end-to-end solution capabilities in cloud, security and endpoint offerings by Tech Data in key geographies, including Hong Kong, Malaysia and Singapore.

“This reinforces our collective focus on growth and diversification, supporting Tech Data’s plans to transform into one that defines a new standard of operational and cultural excellence in our industry,” said Jaideep Malhotra, the President of Tech Data in Asia Pacific.

In June this year, Tech Data, one of the world’s largest technology distributors, was acquired by Apollo Global Management, a leading global alternative investment manager with offices in China, India, Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore.

“Innovix’s strong team of more than 500 experienced professionals have in-depth local industry knowledge that will strengthen our ability to deliver higher value to our channel partners across the region,” added Mr. Malhotra.

Innovix is a 60-year veteran in IT distribution with an expansive range of IT services, including servers, Uninterruptible Power Supplies, racks, cloud backups, threat intelligence and business continuity.

“Our focus on helping businesses accelerate growth and capitalise on digital transformation is perfectly aligned with Tech Data’s mission to connect the world with the power of technology,” said Eric van der Hoeven, the Chief Executive Officer at Innovix.

Headquartered in Hong Kong, Innovix has a network spanning 8,000 channel partners with leading brands like Cisco, Fortinet, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Huawei, Lenovo, Logitech, Microsoft, Pure Storage, Samsung, Toshiba, Veeam, and Vertiv.

The acquisition of Innovix by Tech Data is expected to close in the third quarter of Tech Data’s 2021 fiscal year. It is unclear the value of the acquisition as of yet.

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Is cloud hosting right for your business?

Hosting websites and applications on the cloud is becoming a popular choice for businesses, as it is believed to offer greater flexibility and speed in scalability as well as reliable uptime to keep your services live even if a server goes down.

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Ingram Micro announces Advanced Solutions and growth investment strategy for Asia Pacific

Ingram Micro has announced a series of growth investments spanning the Asia Pacific region as part of its global Advanced Solutions Strategy.

The cloud and supply chain solution provider punctuated its commitment to the region by expanding its Singapore-based value-added solutions approach.

The Vice President of Global Partner Engagement and IoT at Ingram Micro, Sabine Howest, said: “The markets across Asia Pacific continue to be a growing opportunity for Ingram Micro and our channel partners.”

The investments will expand Ingram Micro’s presence in Asia Pacific and provide the technology sales channel with better support and more sophisticated solutions development. 

The team will focus on a new level of service around cybersecurity, hybrid technologies, cloud solutions as well as artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things.

“Building on our longstanding presence in Asia Pacific, Ingram Micro is now further differentiated by our Advanced Solutions go-to-market sales, technical and vendor management,” said Ingram Micro’s ASEAN Vice President and Country Chief Executive, Francis Choo.

The rapid expansion of their Advanced Solutions technology and value-added services portfolio across Asia Pacific will include the formation of a Center of Excellence, which will support channel partners doing business or looking to expand their expertise in cybersecurity, data center and IoT solutions.

Mr. Choo said: “The investments we’re making are impactful and will help our channel partners simplify the complexity of IT and deliver an exceptional service experience to their customers.”

Mr. Choo will expand his role to lead the expansion of the Advanced Solutions and Global Partner Engagement team, while continuing to oversee the leaders who run Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand.

“We will continue to invest in and expand our capabilities across all of the countries where we do business in Asia Pacific,” said Diego Utge, Group President for Asia Pacific at Ingram Micro.

The growth investments by Ingram Micro come at a time when countries across Asia Pacific, including Indonesia, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam are looking to digitally transform businesses and societies through IT spend increases and digitalisation strategies.

Image credit: Ingram Micro

Empowering your digital transformation

With new Industry 4.0 technological advancements taking place, you may be looking for a new data center or cloud provider to empower your digital transformation strategies.

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Legacy data protection technology is severely hindering digital transformation say global enterprise CXOs

Almost half of global organisations are being hindered in their digital transformation journeys by legacy data protection technology and IT skills shortages.

The latest industry data in the Veeam 2020 Data protection Trends Report revealed that 40% of organisations rely on legacy systems to protect their data, with 95% of enterprises suffering unexpected outages lasting almost two hours on average.

“Legacy solutions were intended to protect data in physical data centers in the past, but they’re so outdated and complex that they cost more money, time, resources and trouble than realized,” said Danny Allan, the CTO and SVP of Product Strategy at Veeam.

Downtime and outages can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars, pointing to an urgent need to modernise systems including data protection and move to focus on business continuity to enable digital transformation.

Mr Allan added: “It’s great to see the global drive to embrace technology to deliver a richer user experience, however the Achilles’ Heel still seems to be how to protect and manage data across the hybrid cloud.”

The appetite for digital transformation certainly exists at the top of most CXOs agendas, as spending is expected to hit US$7.4 trillion between 2020 and 2023. Respondents in the study also reported that data delivered through IT has become the heart and soul of their business.

But Veeam believes leaders must move data protection beyond outdated legacy systems for real digital transformation to happen.

“Data protection is more important than ever now to help organizations continue to meet their operational IT demands while also aspiring towards DX and IT modernization,” said Mr Allan.

Data is often spread across data centers and cloud through file shares, shared storage and Software-as-a-Service platforms like Google Cloud, AWS, Alibaba Cloud and more.

Mr Allan believed that legacy tools designed to back up on-premise file shares and applications can’t succeed in the hybrid or multi-cloud world, as they cost companies time and money while putting data at risk.

The report by Veeam also discovered half of businesses recognise that cloud has a pivotal part to play in today’s data protection strategy. The Cloud Data Management provider argued that a company needs a comprehensive solution that supports cloud, virtual and physical data management for any application and any data across any cloud in order to achieve a truly modernised data protection plan.

What is the data protection situation like in Asia Pacific?

In Asia Pacific and Japan, the research by the backup solutions provider found that 22% of organisations did not back up their data, which is higher than the global average of 14%.

“Many CIOs are increasing their data protection efforts, but the reality is that systems can easily fall prey to unplanned outages. When this happens, organisations scramble to put their systems back online,” said Shaun McLagan, the Senior Vice President for Asia Pacific and Japan at Veeam.

One in ten organisations also report an “availability gap” between how fast they can recover applications compared to how fast they actually need to recover them, and 90% have a “protection gap” between how frequently they back up their data versus how much data they can afford to lose after an outage.

Mr McLagan added: “To solve this, organisations should modernize their data protection solutions, which goes far beyond backup.”

Businesses are advised to prevent security breaches and ransomware attacks by having offsite and offline backups as well as adequate training for staff, particularly as cybersecurity threats continue to grow.

To prevent attacks, local governments should also advocate for legislation that ensures a strong culture of security like Malaysia’s National Cyber Security Policy.

Ben Chua, a young cybersecurity pioneer in Singapore, said during W.Media’s first Power Talk: “The only way we can do security well is to educate every single citizen of the nation where the whole nation becomes digitally resilient together.”

According to Veeam, ransomware and cyberthreats is the number one challenge faced by organisations, costing an average of US$80,000 to restore data.

The Veeam 2020 Data Protection Trends Report surveyed more than 1,500 global enterprises to understand their approach toward data protection and management. They were surveyed on how they expect to be prepared for the IT challenges they face, including reacting to demand changes and interruptions in service as well as more aspirational goals of IT modernization and digital transformation.

> Rewatch our digital event on Digital Transformation Through the Lens of CXOs

Is Asia Pacific at risk of losing out on post-pandemic economic recovery by not leveraging on next-generation cloud computing?

The Asia Cloud Computing Association revealed markets in Asia Pacific risk losing out on post-pandemic economic recovery by not taking advantage of next-generation cloud computing technologies.

In the current economic climate affected by the pandemic, some markets seem to have paused on technology and digital infrastructure investments, despite cloud readiness advancing in APAC.

The Executive Director of the Asia Cloud Computing Association, May-Ann Lim, said: “These observations are of concern to us at the ACCA.”

The findings were detailed in the ACCA’s 2020 Cloud Readiness Index. The CRI 2020 discovered that some of the hardest-hit economies with high infection rates were also some of the top scorers, including Singapore, South Korea and Hong Kong.

Ms Lim added: “Cloud readiness and adoption is very intimately linked with economic recovery from COVID-19, mainly because cloud readiness is a measure of digital resilience.”

Cloud computing technologies in Asia have seen an increase in usage as a result of work from home orders caused by the pandemic.

While cloud readiness scores advanced for all 14 economies in APAC, the lowest scores were found in Vietnam, Philippines, Indonesia and China.

“Every economy has been impacted, and everyone would have had some slowdown of the economy, but I would say that cloud readiness is one of the measures which would contribute to a faster economic recovery,” said Ms Lim.

The low scores were found due to many economies’ fragile core capabilities in managing natural risks, privacy and cybersecurity.

Ms Lim added: “[Markets] have decided to put in regulatory restrictions around data flows at a time when the freedom to use cloud productivity tools is needed the most to recover from the economic fallout from COVID-19.”

These data localisation regulations enforced by governing bodies obstruct cross-border data flows and international connectivity required to empower the use of global cloud applications and growth of digital businesses.

The ACCA’s Cloud Readiness Index ranked 14 countries in Asia Pacific against parameters, including international connectivity, power sustainability, data center risk and cybersecurity.

Here are some highlights and recommendations to increase cloud readiness across the region.

South Korea rises through the ranks

South Korea moved up to fifth place in 2020 from seventh in 2018. The Land of the Morning Calm saw notable improvements in privacy, cybersecurity and regulatory environment, but a significant fall in data center risk and a low score in international connectivity.

Data center risk consists of natural hazards, terrorism, the quality of electricity supplies, airport connectivity and more defined by TRPC Data Center Security Risk Index.

Digital Realty, a leading global provider of data center, colocation and interconnection solutions, is set to enter into South Korea with their first carrier-neutral facility in Seoul. Following its completion in 2021, the data center will aim to boost the country’s digital economy.

Digital Realty CEO, A. William Stein, said: “South Korea is incredibly well positioned as a digital hub and center for innovation within the region, given the growing global demand for big data, mobile services and connected devices.”

> Register now for Digital Realty’s historic virtual Seoul Data Center Launch

The Asia Cloud Computing Association believes the strict data localisation rules of the Korea Internet & Security Agency has slowed the availability of cloud services, despite their Cloud Computing Act in 2015 and investments to empower digital transformation through AI and 5G. As a result, only five cloud service providers have received cloud security certifications required to provide services to the public sector, including AWS, Microsoft Azure, IBM Cloud and LG CNS.

Indonesia sees a drop, despite a promising digital economy

Indonesia was described as a highly promising and dynamic digital economy. 

But the ‘Emerald of the Equator’ dropped one position to 12th due to its fall in broadband quality and little improvements in parameters apart from connectivity and cybersecurity.

Upcoming updated cybersecurity and data protection laws in Indonesia may help the country rise in the rankings by harmonising the fragmented regulation environment that exists, empowering businesses to adopt and develop new technology.

Despite relaxed data regulations, the country is also expected to experience investments worth over US1$ billion and an annual growth rate of 11% in the data center market, driven by the rise in cloud adoption.

Malaysia stays solid, but regulations slow progress

The good and possibly not so good news for Malaysia is that it was the only APAC economy not to move in the rankings since 2014, retaining its 8th place position.

The country saw sharp improvements in many parameters this year, including connectivity, energy sustainability, data center risk and connectivity. 

The Government has been active in encouraging cloud adoption by creating a data exchange hub for ministries, plans for smart cities and a digital identity platform known as MyIdentity.

But Malaysia was left in the same position due to restrictions caused by the regulatory environment, privacy laws and intellectual property protection.

The country’s position may begin to improve once it begins to tackle cybersecurity issues and educates younger generations on cloud computing.

The Philippines’ Cloud First policy couldn’t break its fall

The Philippines fell from 9th in 2018 to 11th in 2020. 

Weaker international connectivity, sustainable energy, data center risk and cloud security were amongst the reasons for this drop. 

The fall could not be saved by the country’s ‘Cloud First’ policy and regulations launched in 2017, which is still in the implementation stages today.

There may be hope for the Philippines with more connectivity coming from DITO’s new data center and an e-store to help agencies compare cloud services expected to be released this year and renewed optimism for improving broadband connectivity with initiatives like the Philippine Digital Transformation Strategy.

Singapore loses first place to Hong Kong

The Little Red Dot lost the top spot to Hong Kong in the CRI rankings, falling to second place.

Singapore missed out on first place after seeing falls in international connectivity and freedom of information beyond second place in these parameters.

The country’s proposals for floating data centers could boost its position once again by overcoming the struggles in connectivity, land sparsity and property prices

On the other hand, broadband quality and regulatory environment in cybersecurity and data protection remained strong for the country, with a progressive approach to technology.

The ACCA predicts that Singapore’s top-down approach and weaknesses in cloud governance might hinder digital competitiveness in the future, as it may struggle with adopting new technology like 5G and Internet of Things in a nimble, fast paced manner.

Could Singapore lose its top spots to emerging markets that can take advantage of these technologies and leapfrog the competition?

Thailand could be on the verge of greatness

Thailand has improved its position to ninth place after bettering its international connectivity, data center risk and privacy policies. But with improvements in connectivity and getting more of the population online comes falls in broadband quality and energy sustainability.

The ACCA predicts that Thailand is ‘on the verge of “leapfrogging” ahead of more mature economies’, but creating a flexible regulatory landscape and market dominance from tech giants over smaller, local startups might slow down the country’s digital economy.

Support for cloud readiness may come from the Thai Government after its announcement to approve funding for a $146m state cloud and data center. This will include cloud computing courses for 2,500 government officials.

Vietnam remains in last place

For the third consecutive Index, Vietnam has placed last out of 14 countries in APAC.

While the country does not rank in last place for all parameters, it has fallen behind on international connectivity, data center risk and its difficult to coordinate regulatory environment. Yet, these parameters could be improved following the completion of the country’s biggest data center by FPT Telecom.

However, Vietnam is making strides to improve its sustainable energy and cybersecurity, which is a good sign, as the country looks to power its own Silicon Valley with billion dollar investments.

How can we strengthen cloud computing readiness across Asia Pacific?

Cloud readiness enables industries and markets to get ahead of mature economies by taking advantage of ‘leapfrog’ technologies like 5G, Internet of Things, AI, automated devices, and more.

Since 2018, there has also been no new ‘Cloud First’ policies launched in any country in Asia Pacific even though these measures are recognised as the key driver for digital economies looking to harness the technological advancements empowered by cloud computing.

The ACCA recommended that those economies with ‘Cloud First’ policies focus on making them a reality, while those without these initiatives should consider doing so by supporting cloud vendor accreditation schemes and guidelines for security standards.

The cybersecurity shortcomings of one economy also jeopardise the economic dynamism of another, therefore, countries in APAC should consider aligning cybersecurity regulations with a harmonised approach.

We have seen many countries begin to adopt 5G and make investments in AI, but data localisation measures are restrictive of cloud technology and the free, inexpensive, uncomplicated flow of data across borders.

Ms Lim suggested that we need a cross-disciplinary team to provide review and advice to cross-border trade discussions. This would include both trade negotiators and cybersecurity experts, as well as the borders and customs department.

“A starting point would be to establish a structured cross-border data flow framework for data, such as the APEC CBPR. However, the discussion of cross-border data flows needs to be expanded beyond just APEC economies, and move into some other forums which include all digital economies,” said Ms Lim.

Bridging the gap between mature and emerging markets requires APAC economies to work together to enable innovation and investment in a competitive and sustainable manner.

To effectively recover from the pandemic, APAC economies should implement policies that allow data-driven businesses to thrive without having to choose between innovation and disruption.

Ms Lim advised: “One thing which governments should also focus heavily on is that cloud infrastructure and internet capacity is not evenly distributed.”

When cities went into lockdown mode, with remote working becoming commonplace, a true digital divide in Asia Pacific became apparent, Ms Lim believed, as not everyone has internet connectivity or access to cloud computing in their homes.

Ms Lim said: “Governments in SEA should look closely into the digital gaps … and look beyond the urban-rural divide, but also within cities where there may be a difference between bandwidth available for business connections, and home connections.”

To strengthen cloud readiness, Ms Lim recommended investment in data centers, any technology allowing better computing power to be managed like edge computing, as well as cybersecurity since this is the ‘the key to the castle of personal data’.

Ms Lim had an optimistic view of the future: “There is a funny meme going around at the moment, with the question ‘Who led the digital transformation of your company?’ On the list, the CEO and CTO are not selected, COVID-19 is the circled answer. I think that COVID-19 and the need to implement more remote-access to data, and more work-from-home arrangements, is going to push cloud computing usage, not just in Asia, but all over the world.”

What do you think APAC economies should do to leverage on cloud technologies while remaining compliant with government regulations?

Find out how data centers and cloud can boost digital economies

The demand for data centers is continuing to grow with the adoption of more cloud services.

In South Korea, businesses are predicted to spend a huge US$3 billion on cloud services in 2021, making the country a perfect place to expand data center operations.

Digital Realty is one such data center provider that looks to boost South Korea’s digital economy by meeting connectivity demands and empowering digital transformation through a new Seoul data center.

Be part of history, as Digital Realty virtually launch their first South Korean data center on Wednesday 17 June.

Register now to be part of South Korea’s digital future!