Green Data Centers on Pace for Rapid Growth

For those of you who consider the green data center movement a fad, there is a new report out from Pike Research that suggests investment in green facilities will grow rapidly over the next five years. In fact, Pike predicts that green data centers will generate $41.4 billion in revenue by 2015, representing close to 30 percent of the total data center market.

Three hallmarks of these facilities will be energy efficiency, virtualized infrastructure, and adaptability, meaning they can respond dynamically to new business needs, new processes and services, and technology innovation. Investments in cooling and power infrastructure will represent about 46 of the revenue generated by data center technologies over the next five years, followed by more efficient IT equipment, with about 41 percent of the revenue.

In a press release about the report, Pike analyst Eric Woods writes: "Cost of energy has seldom been a concern for IT departments in the past and there was little incentive to invest in energy efficiency improvements. But as data center energy costs become more visible, the financial benefits of moving to a greener mode of operation are being recognized by CEOs, CFOs, and CIOs."

For me, the Pike research is validated by the fact that I'm receiving a growing number of pitches from data center operators, such as Stream Data Center (which I wrote about yesterday) that are investing substantially in the idea that their data center site or co-location facility is greener than the alternative. While for a brief period of time, you might see some of these data center operators charging a premium for those services, I think you are more likely to see them use the "green" messaging as deal closers and strategic differentiators with companies concerned about corporate sustainability, while keeping prices at parity with less green data center alternatives.

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