Beyond.pl plots Polish datacentre campus expansion to capitalise on growing continental cloud demand

Polish colocation provider Beyond.pl is planning to more than triple the size of its datacentre campus in response to growing demand for cloud and internet-based services in central Europe.

The operator said the $3bn expansion project would result in a fivefold increase in the energy capacity of the renewably-powered site (from 8MW to 42MW), and will increase the total gross area it covers from 12,000m2 to 45,000m2.

Once work on the site, which is based in Poznan, Poland, is completed, the campus will be one of the largest colocation facilities in central Europe, claims Michał Grzybkowski, executive vice-president of technology at Beyond.pl.

“This will allow us to cater for the growing demand for colocation and cloud services in the region,” he added.

The facility will be set up to accommodate high-density 20kW racks, in the interests of energy efficiency, and to ensure it can meet the compute requirements of hyperscale cloud firms, and relatively smaller-scale enterprises too.

Demand for colocation capacity is growing “dynamically” across firms of all sizes at the moment, said Wojciech Stramski, CEO of Beyond.pl, as organisations seek to ramp up their digital transformation efforts in direct response to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic.

“On the one hand, Polish companies already experiencing growth, which has only recently been accelerated as a consequence of the pandemic, have either launched or accelerated digitisation projects,” he said.

“On the other hand, we are seeing increased interest from global cloud providers, software-as-a-service (SaaS) companies, webscalers and large enterprises in general, which are looking to enter and better serve the central European market.”

According to Beyond.pl, the carrier-neutral site has network connections to more than 20 telecoms operators, and is the only server farm within the European Union to achieve the highest-rated ANSI/TIA-942 Telecommunications Infrastructure Standard For Data Centres.

“The building’s power and cooling systems are fully redundant and our operation is subject to periodic independent audits performed by the ANSI organisation,” continued Grzybkowski. “These confirm Beyond.pl’s ability to ensure service availability of up to 99.9999% at an annualised rate.”

Retaining the campus’s sustainability credentials will be a major focus for the firm during the expansion work, with the company projecting that – on completion and at full capacity – the site will achieve a power usage effectiveness (PUE) score of sub-1.2, which it claims is below the 1.4-1.6 average that other sites in the country can achieve.

“One of the largest cost drivers of  datacentre services is related to the consumption of energy used to power and cool the datacentre and server infrastructure,” added Grzybkowski.    

“The lower the PUE rate, the lower the energy losses and datacentre operating costs. As a result, services can be cheaper for the end customer.”

This is one of major reasons why users are increasingly placing such high importance on the sustainability and environmental credentials of the tech firms they source their IT from, said Stramski.

“Many large international organisations have made these values a key part of their strategy. As their partner, we help them lower their carbon footprint,” he said.

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