Africa Data Centres Kicks Off Construction of CPT2 Cape Facility

Africa Data Centres Kicks Off Construction of CPT2 Cape Facility

A subsidiary of the Pan-African technology giant Cassava Technologies Group, Africa Data Centres, is getting ready to lay the foundation for its second data center facility in Cape Town, which the company claims would spur job growth in the region. This comes after it revealed in June that it had acquired land for the construction of a new 20MW facility that would be located in Atlantic Hills, on the northern outskirts of Cape Town’s city center. The project is scheduled to cover 15,000 square meters across eight data halls.

Following the creation of the Midrand (JHB1), Centurion (JHB2), and Elfindale, Cape Town (CPT1) areas, the new Cape Town facility, known as CPT2, will be the carrier-neutral colocation data center provider’s fourth data center in South Africa.

Africa Data Centres owns and controls the largest interconnected network of carrier- and cloud-neutral data center facilities in Africa. The business is a part of the Cassava Technologies Group, a provider of fiber solutions with offices in 14 nations, especially in Eastern, Southern, and South Africa. It offers high-speed connectivity solutions to mobile operators, carriers, enterprise, media, and content firms.

Dr. Angus Hay, regional executive at Africa Data Centres, estimated the Cape Town project alone to be worth over hundreds of million rands. According to Hay, groundwork will begin in the coming weeks while the new facility is still in the preliminary design stage.

“We have acquired land for the [CPT2] facility and we’re going to start construction in 2023. While we don’t have the exact dates, within 18 to 24 months, we would have established our Cape Town facility.

“As with all of our facilities, we start with a scalable approach from a capacity of 5MW and we gradually populate it. What’s driving this expansion for us is the huge demand for our services from a range of customers, particularly the hyperscalers and financial services. We’ve had tremendous growth, especially with our JHB2 facility, where we have had a number of enterprise customers benefitting immensely from our colocation services.”

Last November, Africa Data Centres announced it had secured an investment of almost R4 billion to expand its two Johannesburg-based data centres from 30MW to 100MW of IT load. This is a microcosm of the company’s broader vision, which will see it build 10 hyperscale data centres across Africa, including in Nigeria, Kenya, Morocco and Egypt, by 2024. The company also announced in July that it secured a $50 million investment from C5 Capital, a specialist venture capital firm that invests in cyber security, space security, and energy security.

“We are not disclosing figures on how much we have invested, but just to give you a sense of scale, the overall cost of a data centre is well into the hundreds of millions of rands. That’s the kind of investment we are talking about for an individual data centre. So that all adds up into the bigger figures that we’ve published before on the hundreds of million dollars we have secured in debt finance,” added Dr Hay.

South Africa, which has a robust data center business and is ranked number 25 globally by Cloudscene based on data center density. The country also continues to be the largest data center market on the continent, according to Africa Data Centres.

“Cloud is the driver of the data centre market in South Africa and in the rest of the continent. The two big trends that we are seeing in the enterprise space is general colocation services, through cloud providers buying data centre space, and the second element is that data centres provide the necessary infrastructure to cloud providers,” concluded Dr Hay.