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Data-centre industry to grow 15%: Growth consultant

THAILAND'S data-centre industry will enjoy strong overall growth of more than 15 per cent this year, driven by adoption of cloud computing, rising demand for disaster recovery (DR) solutions, and increasing demand for connectivity within the Asean region, growth consulting firm Frost & Sullivan forecasts.

Teera Kanokkanjanarat, senior ICT (information and communications technology) industry analyst at Frost & Sullivan, said that although cloud-computing technology has been widely known in Thailand for many years, before last year most enterprises were still in the trial period for adopting it.

As cloud computing in Thailand has matured and gained trust, the rate of adoption has risen rapidly. Many data-centre service providers began offering cloud-computing solutions either as infrastructure-as-a-service or managed cloud hosting.

"Disaster-recovery sites have been another area of interest since the big flood in Bangkok," Teera said. "Last year we also had a few major shutdowns of data-centre sites from political movements. So enterprises in both the public and private sectors have begun looking for disaster-recovery solution for these unforeseeable events.

"DR sites and solutions have therefore become opportunities for data-centre providers. Major providers have begun offering DR sites as complementary services for their customers or as a bundled package for new prospects."

He said that despite the political instability in Thailand, people should not overlook the growing importance of Asean and its impact on the country. "From investors' points of view, Thailand remains a key strategic market for Asean. As data-centre providers continue to improve their facilities and service to meet international standards, more international providers are expressing interest in entering the Thai market either as investors or to form joint ventures with local providers."

Even as the Thai economy suffered a decline throughout 2013, made worse by the political crisis that flared up late in the year, Frost & Sullivan's research shows that data-centre providers experienced unforeseen business growth.

Teera said the research showed that Thailand's data-centre industry grew by about 21 per cent last year compared with 2012, with total revenue of more than Bt1.7 billion. Despite the recent political turmoil and ongoing economic downturn, enterprises in both the public and private sectors turned their attention to strengthening their data centres. Many began to include data-centre investment in their business-continuity planning agendas.


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