Nairobi to host East Africa’s biggest data centre

 Nairobi to host East Africa’s biggest data centre

From left: Cassava Technologies CEO Hardy Pemhiwa, US Ambassador to Kenya Meg Whitman (second right), UK High Commissioner to the country Jane Marriott, MP John Kiarie with Liquid Telecom’s Group Chief Technology and Innovation Officer Ben Roberts at the groundbreaking ceremony for East Africa’s largest data centre in Sameer Park, Nairobi.

Kenya’s capital has earned another feather on its Silicon Savannah cap following the groundbreaking of a new data centre whose capacity is unmatched in the region.

The new build of Africa Data Centres (ADC) will expand the company’s current capacity by more than 300 percent to 15 megawatts from 4 megawatts of IT load, as the industry prepares for a surge in demand of its services, especially from small businesses.

Hardy Pemhiwa, Group President and CEO of Cassava Technologies — Africa Data Centre’s (ADC) parent company — tipped Kenya as a bastion of digital technologies that will be essential to future economic growth.

“Our decision to increase our investment in our data centers in Kenya is in recognition of the position the country occupies as a leader in the adoption of digital technologies in Africa.

“We believe that data centers will play a significant role in digital transformation and economic growth of our continent. Without them, the push towards a digital economy in Africa will be missing a key pillar,” said Mr Pemhiwa.

ADC chief executive officer Tesh Durvasula touted his company’s reputable cloud computing clientele, bidding local business to seek such services from from it.

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“[Information Technology] is such an important part of everyone’s business and all major cloud companies are customers of ours. When small businesses need to buy an Oracle cloud solution or a Google cloud solution, they can find it here at our data center,” said Mr Durvasula.

He added: “The expansion will enable Africa Data Centres clients to grow and scale according to their requirements. They can start small, increase to a medium capacity and even benefit from a hyperscale type in a few years if they choose to. This will enable customers to operate multiple deployments across our sites with a single operations team, campus and infrastructure they are familiar with.”

US Ambassador to Kenya Meg Whitman said the new data center will expand the country’s secure digital infrastructure, while her United Kingdom counterpart Jane Marriott added that implementing robust data protection laws will attract foreign investors.

ADC’s expansion at the new site will be completed in the first half of 2024 and will bring three times more capacity than is currently installed.

The new facility will be built in ADC’s state of the art modular design – an innovative approach that sees the entire facility, including all critical plant rooms, prefabricated off-site to ensure the highest possible quality, whilst local contractors will still benefit from contracts to lay foundations, assemble, and complete the build.

Africa Data Centres plans to invest $500 million into building hyperscale data centres across Africa with the support of the US Development Finance Corporation.



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