Technology giant IBM said on Tuesday that it would open two SoftLayer data centres in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia. The first, to open in September at Deer Park in Melbourne, is part of IBM's $1.2 billion global investment that aims to expand its cloud computing footprint.
IBM has other SoftLayer data centres in different countries, with the Melbourne site bringing to over 15,000 physical servers that offer a full portfolio of SoftLayer cloud services. It includes bare metal and virtual servers, storage and networking. With two centres in Australia, the Land Down Under is the only nation outside the US with multiple SoftLayer centres.
Lance Crosby, chief executive officer of SoftLayer, said, "Australia is an important market for IBM and SoftLayer. We are seeing a strong appetite for cloud in the market, particularly towards the hybrid cloud model. We are investing in Australia, combining and strengthening our existing cloud capabilities."
IBM plans to turn on the first batch of 5,000 servers in September, including the one in Melbourne. It would boost capacity to more than 15,000 servers within three years.
Crosby added that SoftLayer offers high-value, enterprise grade hybrid cloud environment. He pointed out that IBM's ability to make available to Aussie enterprises SoftLayer's global cloud infrastructure would speed up cloud adoption among new organisations that always seek and respond to change.
Even before the opening of the Melbourne data centre, Australia had been a good market for SoftLayer since it provided 5 per cent of the latter's revenues.
In the past few years, IBM had been heavily focusing on the development of its cloud service infrastructure that by mid-2013, it had purchased $2 billion worth of equipment.
Besides the $35-million Melbourne data centre, the second one in Sydney would open in the later part of 2014, while IBM just recently launched new data centres in Hong Kong and London, and would also open one also in Toronto.
While cloud computing would free the end-user from the need to purchase mainframes and other bulky equipment, shifting the responsibility not only to buy but also to maintain and upgrade, to cloud computing service providers such as IBM.
Cloud computing frees the end-user from a lot of the responsibility over physical technology assets, but it provides tech firms like SoftLayer and IBM business as tech firms provide innovative solutions to growing demand for data, whether it is in the clouds or physically in the premises of the end-users.