Data revolution in Africa

Nairobi, Kenya, 28 Jan 2022, ZEXPRWIRE, The data revolution in Africa is gaining momentum. 2021 must have been one of the best years to date in Africa’s data and connectivity industry and the data center industry in particular.

Some of the interesting developments on data center space in Africa in 2021 include:

  1. MainOne acquisition by Equinix Data Centers – despite this happening at the end of the year, it is likely the biggest news of 2021. Here is the context. Equinix is the largest data center operator in the world with between 16% – 22% market share of the raised floor space globally. Equinix has always been very selective in its investment opportunities. This happens to be the first investment in Africa. Acquisition of MainOne, (the largest ISP and data center operator in West Africa) is a statement of intent.
  2. Launch of a hyper-scale expansion plan by Africa Data Centers. ADC has started developing 10 hyperscale data centers in South, East, and West Africa.
  3. Launch of a third data center by iColo. I Colo launched the third data center in Mombasa Kenya, this is a quick move after launching her first two data centers in Nairobi and Mombasa. Business must be good to pull such moves in less than 3 years.
  4. Completion of a data center by Vantage properties in Cape Town. Vantage properties are investing over $1 billion in data centers in the next few months in Africa.
  5. Development of Masinga Datacenter Mas101 promises to be the largest green data center in Africa. The data center is a high-density cloud data center with a capacity of 30KW per rack. This rack density is a game- changer, most data centers around the world have a power density of 4.5kw per rack. The higher the power density the better the PUE and efficiency in general.

The Big question is, will 2022 do better…? All signs indicate a greater 2022. Bigger developments from the 5 items above will happen in 2022.

There is skepticism around Sustained growth through 2023-2030. Here are key things that need to be addressed in Africa.

  1. Politicalstability

Africa is a young continent full of young democracies. As expected, Africa is facing all the political challenges associated with young democracies. Africa needs to develop politically to foster sustained economic growth. Without sustained economic growth, it is hard to continue attracting data center investments.

  1. Energy Reliability

Many data center developers in Africa are forced to develop their own energy solutions. Few countries have reliable energy solutions. African governments need to invest in reliable energy solutions.

  1. Energy Cost

Africa had the highest energy tariffs, which affect the cost of running data centers. Effectively, the colocation and cloud prices are not competitive. There is a need for deliberate action towards development of adequate and inexpensive energy solutions.


Published On: January 28, 2022