OVHcloud, based in France, is gearing up to expand its presence in the Asia Pacific (APAC) cloud infrastructure market by significantly increasing its investment in the region. While already having established a footprint in Singapore and Australia, the infrastructure-as-a-service provider is now aiming to take its operations to a new level.
“We have a very strong commitment to the APAC region,” OVHcloud CEO Michel Paulin told ARN. “And we have substantially increased our investment here. We want to address local needs and especially address the new digital needs through cloud technologies.”
This heightened investment in the APAC region comes two years after OVHcloud secured a substantial capital injection of €350 million, along with a support plan of €1.8 billion from the French government.
According to Paulin, one of OVHcloud’s key differentiators for both partners and customers is its innovative data centre cooling technology that utilises water instead of traditional air conditioning to cool servers. By adopting this water-based cooling approach, the company drastically reduces the power requirements for its operations, resulting in more sustainable cloud consumption for its customers.
“For us, it’s really very important to address this very fast-growing [APAC] market,” Paulin said. “But we try to do it with innovation and the capacity to provide local solutions long-term and sustainably.”
The decision to leverage two different data centre operators was intentional, as Paulin explained: “We have master and slave type of model back-up system. Using the [NextDC] building was also very important. We decided to be another building to give a remote capacity of having a backup system which will increase the resiliency of our services in the city. It’s better for resiliency and security to have two [locations].”
In Australia, OVHcloud will have around 10,000 servers in its data centres, which, according to Paulin, come with a “very high” density of CPU, computing and networking storage. Paulin stressed that while OVHcloud uses data centre operators’ warehouse space in APAC, it does not use any of its cooling racks.
“Usually it’s an empty room with all the data centre facilities that we rent,” he explained. “And there we are accustomed to being able to introduce the water-cooling technology to our own operations.”
Meanwhile, in Singapore, OVHcloud is intending to increase its footprint in its current data centre by 1.5 times. Singapore, which serves as the regional headquarters for OVHcloud currently comprises a team of 21, while the Australian team consists of 11 members.
Water cooling is by no means a perfect method, Paulin notes, as it’s also a precious resource. However, he stressed that OVHcloud’s “closed circuit” enables them to use much less water.
“That’s why we believe it’s also a way to address some of the issues of sustainability and we are very proud to introduce innovations to Australia and to be able to address long-term issues of sustainability of resources for our water.”