Exclusive Market Intelligence: 385 Attend Washington, D.C. & Mid-Atlantic Summit

The Third Annual Washington, D.C. & Mid-Atlantic Data Center Summit, held on September 16-17 in Reston, VA  convened 385 senior-level data center real estate and connectivity executives from Virginia, Maryland, Washington, D.C. and other national markets. Participating firms represented the industry’s most active developers and investors: Digital Realty, RagingWire Data Centers, GEICO, Equinix, BDP International and Intelishift Technologies. More than 50 speakers participated in 12 panels, combing 9 hours of informational panels and networking opportunities. Greenberg Traurig sponsored the official opening night reception at The Hyatt Regency Reston.

Opening night reception, held on September 16, sponsored by Greenberg Traurig.

A special case study brought Loudoun County into focus. Connectivity, Power & Incentives: How and Why Loudoun County Became Host to the Largest Concentration of Data Centers on Planet Earth, was moderated by Buddy Rizer, Director – Department of Economic Development, Loudoun County. This case study addressed the important differentiators that make Northern Virginia a top destination for the industry, including: fiber, land, power, water and incentives.

Buddy Rizer, Director – Department of Economic Development, Loudoun County; John Leonbruno, Vice President, Digital Realty Trust; Phillip Sandino, Director of Customer Solutions – Northern Virginia, Dominion Virginia Power; Mike Latham, Executive Director of Planning & Engineering, Loudoun Water;
William McCausland, Key Account Development Specialist, Dominion Virginia Power; and Atul Sharma, Virginia Economic Development Partnership.

Standing-room only for the Loudoun County Case Study at The Third Annual Washington, D.C. & Mid-Atlantic Data Center Summit.

Allen C. Tucker, Managing Director – Tenant Representation Consulting, Jones Lang LaSalle,  Vinay Nagpal, Director, Carrier Relations, DuPont Fabros Technology and colleague attended the summit.

Event Highlights & CRE Intelligence from The Third Annual Washinton, D.C. & Mid-Atlantic Data Center Summit:  Featured Interview: Up Close with Equinix

  • Moderator: Kemal M. Hawa, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, LLP
  • Jonathan Lin, Vice President, Corporate Development and Strategy – Americas, Equinix
  • Phillip Marangella, Senior Director – Cloud Solutions, Equinix
  • Ted Stettinius, Vice President, Equinix

Kemal Hawa: Your number one competitor is your–are your customers themselves, which raises a fundamental issue about the cloud is that–the cloud involves the migration of an enterprise customer’s IT infrastructure from its basement into your data centers.  What factors go into that migration, and what’s inhibiting a faster migration?

Phillip Marangella, Senior Director – Cloud Solutions, Equinix

We get that question all the time, who is your biggest competitor?  And you see the threat from wholesale, or what have you. I mean at the It’s nearly 90 percent of enterprise’s end source, their IT infrastructure, right?  And it’s–cloud has been very beneficial in the fact it’s opening their eyes to outsourcing more of their IT infrastructure to the cloud.  And, so, that obviously sits in And, so, we’ve had tremendous success over the last few years and capturing a lot of these cloud service providers to come into Equinix.  And you see all of the biggest names coming to Equinix.  What we then do is–part of the heritage of the Equinix of building up these ecosystems is working with these It’s not just about giving you great space and power and connectivity.  It’s about building out those ecosystems and then helping the enterprise figure out how best to put which application into what market and who to connect to, and all the kind of puts and takes that they need to more efficiently migrate to the cloud, right?  And, so, I think that’s a big part And, so, it’s a collaborative nature that we’re kind of working with our service provider partners.  That’s a big role that Ted has had in working with the networks, bridging all these different kind of–like I said the cloud supply chain together to make it easier for the–the enterprises are really what we’re going after now to get them out of the basement.

Kemal Hawa: Let’s talk about the placement of Equinix’s data centers and how being–proximity to the user matters, the user experience, and especially as move for the Internet of things.  How do you make a decision about which markets to be in, and how does that affect the various applications in terms of Jitter and Latency, Netflix versus YouTube, that sort of thing.

Jonathan Lin, Vice President, Corporate Development and Strategy – Americas, Equinix

Our core strategy is centered around interconnection and performance for these data centers. And by performance it’s really application end user performance.  So, our–different than some of our competition where it’s based around lowest construction cost, or low power cost delivery, it’s–for us it’s more of a where are the population centers? Where are the connectivity centers, and what’s developing there from an IT services perspective, or cloud ecosystem, or financial exchange ecosystem?  It’s centered around that. I think we certainly have quite a broad market depth across the world, and we’ve covered that. And I think at this point I think we can access I think 95 percent of the world’s end user population within 20 milliseconds or somewhere around those stats.  So, it’s–we’re pretty happy about our coverage.Certainly we’ll continue to evaluate additional markets down the road, but it’s–I think there’s a hypothesis out there that the edge is continuing to expand and to more and more kind of second tier markets.  And second tier markets we see that as mainly being driven by broadband video.  And, so, it’s interesting to a degree, but a relatively limited use case compared to really the pure Internet of things and enterprise cloud applications.

Kemal Hawa: Another theme that you’ve talked about, and we’ve touched on this quite a bit–I want to get a little more detail though–is commoditization. There is a view that for some data center operators it’s a large concrete refrigerator with power available to it. But, in fact, its value added services and the interconnection of bandwidth availability and connectivity.  Talk a little bit about if you were an enterprise customer, for example, why Equinix?

Ted Stettinius, Vice President, Equinix

Everybody is talking about ecosystem. Everybody is talking about proximity, the value of proximity.  And I actually think over time is what we’ll see is more differentiation in the sense  that you’ll start to be–data centers starting to be built, you’re already seeing it–that are low availability where I’m just doing archival storage.  I want an end data center in a cheap power location where that use case applies, or I’m not trying to do ecosystem. I will allow the network to get me into the ecosystem and I’m going to buy wholesale within a reasonable distance from where the cloud players are.  So, I think the industry could do a better job of getting more prescriptive about, this is my data center, here’s what I built it for, here’s what I think you
ought to use it for as opposed to everybody just saying we’re high availability and have good ecosystem proximity.