Equinix continues to expand in India’s biggest server-hosting market, with the US giant announcing plans to build its third Mumbai data centre at an initial investment cost of more than $86 million.
The initial investment includes the acquisition of a land parcel providing nearly four acres (1.6 hectares) for development, Equinix said Thursday in a release. Dubbed MB3, the new facility will offer more than 1,375 cabinets of initial capacity and over 4,150 when fully built out.
The first phase of MB3 is scheduled to open in the second quarter of 2024 and follows Equinix’s entry into the country with the acquisition of MB1 and MB2 from local developer GPX last year.
“The increasing digitalisation of the economy is continuously driving the demand for data centre and interconnection services in India,” said Manoj Paul, managing director of Equinix India. “Particularly in Mumbai, the high demand for our digital infrastructure services among Indian and international customers is making us very optimistic about the market.”
Campus in the Making
Situated at Chandivali Farm Road in Mumbai’s Chandivali commercial district, MB3 will be adjacent to MB2 and 1.5 kilometres (0.9 miles) from MB1.
Under a deal first announced in August 2020, Equinix paid $161 million for MB1 and MB2, which together supply 50,000 square feet (4,700 square metres) of co-location space. The two facilities provide a total of 1,350 cabinets and house the digital infrastructure of more than 270 international brands and local companies, Equinix said.
“We are focused on further investments in building the infrastructure in India to enable our existing and new customers in India to launch their services closer to their consumers,” Paul said. “The close proximity of MB3 at Chandivali Farm Road to our existing data centres will enable us to form a robust campus so that our customers can leverage the dense ecosystems from any of our data centres in Mumbai.”
In March, Equinix announced its $9 million acquisition of a 5.5 acre land parcel at an IT park in Chennai on a long-term leasehold basis. No development details were disclosed.
NASDAQ-listed Equinix operates more than 240 data centres worldwide, including 52 Asia Pacific facilities across Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, South Korea and Singapore.
Mumbai’s dominant data centre market is expected to grow by 166 percent to nearly 530 megawatts of IT load by 2023, according to a report released in April by JLL, which advised Equinix on the MB3 land transaction.
By 2024, Mumbai is expected to account for 63 percent of real estate demand from data centres at nearly 6.2 million square feet (576,000 square metres). Chennai will be a distant second (2 million square feet), followed by the Delhi National Capital Region (670,000 square feet) and Hyderabad (660,000 square feet), the property consultancy said.
Last year, Singapore-based Princeton Digital Group began development of a 48MW multi-storey data centre campus in Navi Mumbai, while SGX-listed Ascendas India Trust said it would invest $162 million to develop and operate the first of two buildings planned for the REIT’s inaugural data centre campus, also in Navi Mumbai.