Data center: a constantly expanding market.

Cushman & Wakefield, one of the world’s leading companies in corporate real estate services, recently published its “2022 Global Data Center Market Comparison”; a long-awaited report that evaluated 1,333 data centers in 55 markets all around the world. This report seeks to shed light on the best potential locations to invest, own and operate the installations of data center.

Each of these markets is evaluated, based on three variable groups: high weight, (market size, fiber-optic connectivity, and cloud availability) medium weight, (incentives, taxes, political stability, vacancy, plumbing development, sustainability, and intelligent cities) and low weight (energy costs, land prices and environmental risk).

Like every form of appraisal of this kind, these markets are not, necessarily, the best option for every case and need. Many other markets, which may be more suitable to data center’s owners, operators, and users, can be left out of these international measures that generally use very strict evaluation criteria.

Territory Manager at OCP TECH, Facundo Martinez, believes this applies to Ecuador and Panama. “Besides Chile, these two countries are also positioning themselves as very interesting markets in terms of data centers for the region.” In the case of Ecuador, particularly, OCP TECH had a very strong takeoff due to the appeal of the country’s market. We started developing data center technology for the bank, with the idea to continue growing towards the export sector, oil and mining industry and the public sector.

Martínez also agrees with the most important conclusion in Cushman & Wakefield’s report: those changes that started developing during 2020, due to the pandemic, became permanent. Everyday and due to a scattered workforce, new companies and government agencies are choosing the cloud or hybrid IT strategies. This is reflected in the energy consumption of the 55 markets, - approximately 4.1 GW in 2022 in comparison to the 2.9 GW from last year and the 1.6 from 2020. Campus of 100 MW, for their part, are now much more common than before the pandemic.

Regarding the most attractive data center markets in 2022, Cushman & Wakefield, once again, recognized North Virginia (United States) with the best performance, making it the third consecutive year. This is one of the biggest data center´s markets in the world with a solid construction project portfolio. Its appeal consists of excellent connectivity, a very important incentives selection and a relatively low cost of energy. The miracle relies on an exceptionally low availability together with a very high demand. In North Virginia, both operators and tenants are interested in expansion. According to this report, North Virginia is turning, in two years, into the first 2GW market in the world.

Despite their lack of availability of residential lands, Silicon Valley and Singapore came second. These are two markets with solid ecosystems, excellent connectivity, constant demand, and availability and expansion of every main service in the cloud. Chicago and Atlanta tied in fourth place. Both offer considerable incentives, low prices in land, much development, and the lowest energy costs than most of the biggest data center markets. The other locations that complete the Top 10, according to Global Data Center Market Comparison, were Hong Kong, Sidney, Dallas, Portland, and Seattle.

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