American managed services and hosting provider Ascent is expanding its data center portfolio, having recently acquired facilities in Greater Atlanta and Toronto. The purchases were made in partnership with investment management firm TowerBrook Capital Partners, although the company also raised $3.3 million in funds via a limited liability company called Ascent ATL-TOR LCC, reports St Louis Business Journal.

Ascent specializes in industry-specific, made-to-order data center solutions, with existing facilities in Dallas and Chicago, and planned construction in St Louis, MO. 

The only way is ascending

Ascent's CH2 Chicago data center
Ascent’s CH2 Chicago data center – Ascent

As part of the deal, both data centers will be partially leased back to the previous owner, a “global technology company”, with Ascent providing technical support and continuing to cater to its infrastructural needs.

Ascent will also offer ”plug-and-play” data center space to new customers, which the company states is well suited for cloud and edge deployments. 

The facilities are immediately ready for lease, with 8.1MW of critical power in Atlanta (ATL1), expandable to 14MW; Toronto (TOR1) is expected to provide up to 4.8MW of critical power in the second quarter of this year, with the potential for expansion. Both data centers are concurrently maintainable, aiming for “100 percent uptime.”

Ascent’s Dallas facility is built to weather tornadoes, with 15-inch walls, a 13.5-inch roof and an 8000 lb blast door. The experience in physical security should play in its favor with the ATL1 facility: a recent CBRE report (via DCK) found that although demand for data center space is experiencing a slowdown in Atlanta, there is a growing market for backup and disaster recovery deployments, partially due to the state’s vulnerability to hurricanes.

As for Toronto, the heart of Canadian business and finance sectors and home to the Toronto Internet Exchange, is a location of choice for data center providers, and is increasingly known as one of the country’s prime areas to invest in.

Cushman&Wakefield’s 2016 ‘data centre risk index report’ identified Canada as the world’s 6th safest country to build a data center in, based on a range of criteria from energy cost to risk of natural disaster and political stability.