Equinix, the United States-based digital infrastructure company, announced Wednesday its market entry into Malaysia with plans to build a new International Business Exchange (IBX) data center located in Johor, called JH1.

With an initial investment of approximately $40 million, JH1 is scheduled to begin operations in the first quarter of 2024, providing 500 cabinets and 1,960 square meters of colocation space, Equinix said in a statement.

According to the statement, the IBX data center will support Malaysian companies and multinationals doing business in Malaysia with access to Platform Equinix to bring together and interconnect the foundational digital infrastructure that powers their success.

Equinix said Malaysia’s digital economy is forecast to reach $34 billion in gross merchandise value by 2025, with the country on course to achieve a digital economy contribution to gross domestic product of at least 25.5 percent the same year.

Thus, it opined that Equinix’s expansion in Malaysia will unlock opportunities for Malaysian businesses expanding internationally and for multinational corporations pursuing growth and innovation in the Malaysian market.

It also said Malaysian companies will benefit from the ability to accelerate their evolution from traditional to digital businesses by rapidly scaling their infrastructure, easily adopting hybrid multicloud architectures and interconnecting with strategic business partners within the Platform Equinix ecosystem of more than 10,000 customers.

Equinix’s expansion in Malaysia is also in line with the MyDIGITAL initiative launched by the Malaysian Government, which aims to provide a blueprint for the country to accelerate growth of digital products and services.

“While the digital economy represents a catalyst for the Malaysian economy, data centers are integral in supporting digital ecosystems and their sustained growth,” said Onn Hafiz Ghazi, Chief Minister of Johor,

“We welcome this investment by Equinix, along with the global expertise they bring to Johor, as well as the rich digital experiences and outcomes that will benefit this state and the country,

“We are looking forward to working together, in transforming Malaysia into a digitally driven, high-income nation at the forefront of this region’s digital economy,” he added.

This expansion marks Equinix’s second foray into the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) following the recently announced plans to expand into Indonesia, allowing the company to address digital infrastructure demand critical to the region’s digital growth.

“Establishing a presence in Johor strengthens Equinix’s leadership position in Asia-Pacific within a strategic market such as Malaysia, one of the most requested markets in Asia-Pacific by our global customers,” said Jeremy Deutsch, President, Asia-Pacific, Equinix.

“We look forward to deepening our collaboration through future expansion, maximizing local businesses' digital growth potential with rich digital experiences and outcomes,” he added.

JH1, a two-story facility, will be located at Nusajaya Tech Park (NTP) in Iskandar, Johor. It is 15 kilometers from Singapore, allowing the data center to address excess demand from organizations in the city-state in addition to Malaysian domestic demand.

Meanwhile, Equinix has the option of acquiring additional land in NTP to build a second facility, supporting Malaysia’s digital growth aspirations.

With the expansion, companies and multinationals doing business in Malaysia will be able to access Platform Equinix to store and distribute large volumes of latency-sensitive data and applications closer to end users and local markets.

The Johor data center will also provide organizations with access to vibrant ecosystems made up of more than 2,100 networks and over 3,000 cloud, information technology (IT) and system integrator services that Equinix works with globally.

When opened, the new IBX data center in Johor will increase Equinix’s total global footprint of more than 245 data centers across 71 metros and 32 countries, providing Equinix’s 10,000+ customers more ways to securely deploy, directly connect and effectively scale their digital infrastructure in a rapidly growing economy.

It is expected to also present opportunities for further expansion into new metros and market segments in Malaysia.

In Asia-Pacific, Equinix currently has 51 data centers across 13 metros across Australia, China, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Korea and Singapore.

In addition, Equinix also announced expansions into Chennai in India, and Jakarta in Indonesia in 2022, strengthening its market leadership in the region.

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