Europe keen on data center space: study

More than four out of five companies surveyed are planning data center expansions within the next two years, according to a new study of the data center market in Europe wholesale data center provider Digital Realty Trust ( conducted by research firm Campos Research & Analysis (

Also, more than a quarter of surveyed companies are planning data center expansion projects to commence in 2009, according to the study released this week that assessed the data center plans of European companies.

This study follows a similar one Digital Realty Trust released in early 2008 about the European market, however, this one paints a different picture of the European market. In early 2008, five out of six respondents said they were planning an expansion, and one-third planning theirs within the next 12 months. While this may suggest a somewhat less cheery (although not altogether dismal) picture of the European market, those that are investing in data centers are investing bigger, and more companies are investing this year than last.

Since last year's survey, 117 percent more firms will seek more than 2,500 square metres for their data centers, and a 22 percent increase in projected average data center space requirements from 1,300 square metres to 1,600 square metres, showing that the scope of data center projects has grown significantly.

"Despite the dramatic changes in the economic climate, this year's results indicate that an even larger proportion of European companies are planning data center projects. Moreover, these projects are bigger by every measure," Digital Realty Trust international operations senior vice president Bernard Geoghegan said in a statement. "These trends corroborate what we are continuing to hear from so many of our customers -- that data centers have become critical corporate assets that ensure competitiveness in difficult times and that will drive growth when economic conditions improve."

Also, more than 60 percent of companies plan to use a partner to expand rather than building their own large data center project, which is good news for Digital Realty Trust and other data center developers.

London and Paris took the number one and two places as the best locations for data center projects, according to respondents.

"This survey supports the strong demand for data center space we are continuing to see in London and Paris," Geoghegan said. "These markets already have a significant imbalance between demand for data center facilities and very limited supply, and this study indicates that those will continue to be key locations for corporate data center projects over the next two years."

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