Equinix, Digital Realty lead top 20 metro colocation markets, says analyst

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Equinix, Digital Realty and other top data center providers continue to find growth opportunities in markets like the Washington/Northern Virginia metro area. (Image: iStockphoto)

Equinix, according to its third-quarter 2017 earnings report, cemented its data center position with strong revenue in the world’s top 20 largest metros.

The data center provider reported that third quarter revenues rose 25% year-over-year to $1.15 billion, including $137 million of revenues from its acquisition of 29 Verizon data centers.

But Equinix’s dominant spot is facing growing competition from Digital Realty, who would lead five more in a full quarter if its DuPont Fabros acquisition was included in its numbers.

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Synergy Research revealed in its latest report that the top colocation markets include 10 in North America, four in the EMEA region and six in the APAC region. Across the 20 largest metros, retail colocation accounted for 72% of third quarter revenues and wholesale 28%.

Q3 2017 Colocation

Other colocation providers that also have a large presence in the top 20 metros include 21Vianet, @Tokyo, China Telecom, CoreSite, CyrusOne, Global Switch, Interxion, KDDI, NTT, SingTel and QTS.

The top 20 metros with annualized growth rates of 15% or more, which were measured in local currencies, were Shanghai, Beijing, Hong Kong and Washington/Northern Virginia. Each of these markets reported strong growth in both the retail and wholesale segments of the market, but Synergy said that wholesale growth “tended to be higher.”

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“While we are seeing reasonably robust growth across all major metros and market segments, one number that jumps out is the wholesale growth rate in the Washington/Northern Virginia metro area,” said John Dinsdale, a chief analyst and research director at Synergy Research Group, in a release. “It is by far the largest wholesale market in the world and for it to be growing at 20% is particularly noteworthy.”

Chicago saw strong wholesale revenue growth, but retail colocation growth lagged.

Overall, the research firm said that only 20 metro areas account for 59% of worldwide retail and wholesale colocation revenues.

Synergy said that colocation revenue growth is becoming more concentrated in the top five metros, surpassing growth in the rest of the world by two percentage points. What this means is the worldwide market is slowly being concentrated in those key metro areas.

“The broader picture is that data center outsourcing and cloud services continue to drive the colocation market, and the geographic distribution of the world’s corporations is focusing the colocation market on a small number of major metro areas,” Dinsdale said.

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