Shared services are still emerging but DCD Converged Middle East found a healthy in-house community in Dubai
Middle Eastern countries have robust growth, and their governments are diversifying their economies, but the public cloud has not taken off there yet, a gathering of data center businesses in Dubai heard this week.
Several economies in the region are growing at up to seven percent, and demand for data centers is growing rapidly. But while the rest of the world is moving to the public cloud, the Middle East is still focused on building and expanding in-house data center facilities, it emerged fairly clearly at the DCD Converged Middle East event in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, this week.
“Recent months have seen considerable investment across the region in the development of data center services and facilities,” says a recent DCD Intelligence report, Commercial Data Center Services in the Gulf (GCC) Region which addressed the states of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), an economic union of states around the Persion Gulf . “A substantial portion of regional growth has been driven by in-house data center deployment and expansion initiatives, particularly by banks, telecoms network operators, government institutions, universities and other large organizations.”
Firms may be preferring in-house facilities, because the public cloud market is less developed as the services markets are less open to competition and are still often dominated by incumbents and monopolies. However, DCD’s research predicts that eventually, the cloud and shared services will subsume much of the data center activity.
Meanwhile, the high demand for in-house data centers has certainly created a cohesive and energetic community of data center buliders in the region, many of whom created a stellar gathering of end-users, operators, service providers and advisors for this year’s DCD Converged Middle East conference - which marked ten years since the flagship event first opened in Dubai.
“This was an excellent event with a very high specific gravity of attendees,” said Cole Crawford, chairman of DCD’s new Stacking IT event strand and CEO of Vapor IO. ”The quality of discussion was high but what impressed me was the community feel of the event – it’s where the data center industry meets to do business.”
Recent months have seen considerable investment across the GCC region in mission-critical IT and communications infrastructure. A substantial portion of regional growth has been driven by new on-premise data center deployments and expansion initiatives, as well as growth in the services sector.
Colocation facilities were the most common type of Middle East data center created in the recent past, with 24 out of 25 facilities offering the service. Cloud services are the second most popular offering, but there is a reluctance to embrace the cloud fully.
The event was crowned with a Gala Dinner where the winners of the DCD 2014 Middle East awards were presented with their trophies.