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Africa Data Centres confirms progress on Midrand facility

By , ITWeb
South Africa , 22 Jan 2020

Africa Data Centres confirms progress on Midrand facility

Africa Data Centres, pan-African network of vendor-and carrier-neutral datacentres, has begun construction of its latest datacentre facility, located in Midrand, Gauteng in South Africa, and this is scheduled for completion in 2021.

The company currently has five datacentres in major reginal hubs including Midrand, Cape Town, Nairobi, Harare and Kigali.

According to Xavier Matagne, Group Development Director at Africa Data Centres, the new facility is unique because certain elements of the project will be built on-site, while others, most notably the critical plant rooms, are prefabricated off-site and added at the appropriate phase of construction.

"These modules, which are essential to operations, will be built in factories abroad where they can be thoroughly tested before being shipped to South Africa and plugged into the building," he says.

Matagne cites several reasons for this approach; "Firstly, to ensure the highest standards and quality, it is better to test these modules in a controlled environment as opposed to a construction environment. Secondly, given the time pressures that are natural for this type of project prefabricating them in this way, significantly reduced time to market."

Matagne says the new facility will not only boost the South African economy by creating employment, but it will also enhance the local market through the addition of global skills.

"Our new facility will offer customers the flexibility they require from a co-location facility, irrespective of whether they are a small business needing a single low-density rack or one of the largest enterprises requiring multiple very high-density racks" he adds.

Africa Data Centres believes the facility is unique in that it has been specifically designed to distribute power and cooling efficiently and cost-effectively "to meet a wide range of customer demands and densities."

Matagne adds that the company fully understand the energy challenges South Africa is currently facing and as such, efficiency is a major focus at the Johannesburg data centre.

"We will be monitoring the facility 24/7/365 and continually looking for ways to reduce power consumption, through the design and operations."

Over and above-being power efficient the facility has been designed to be fully scalable, he explains.

"From day one, it will possible to operate the data centre, even with a limited amount of electrical and mechanical equipment installed and we will incrementally increase the capacity of the site as the IT load starts to grow."

In November 2019, Stephane Duproz, chief executive officer, Africa Data Centres, spoke to ITWeb Africa on the sidelines of AfricaCom, and said there was a major opportunity to develop and leverage a network of neutral datacentres across the continent.

He added that Kenya is "the next big thing" to emerge in the market.

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