The Netherlands' largest colocation provider, formed by a merger during 2019, has announced a new brand name: NorthC.

The Datacenter Group (TDCG) and NLDC were merged in July 2019 by their owner, the DWS investment division of Deutsche Bank, creating a group with ten data centers in the Netherlands, which has now been dubbed NorthC. The move comes as local data center providers are negotiating with the Amsterdam authorities to end a moratorium on new data centers in the city.

NorthC's Amsterdam facility in Westpoort business park – NorthC

Dutch courage

In July 2019, two Amsterdam city authorities declared a halt on planning approval for new data centers, stating that the sector was "out of control." Despite ambitions to continue to develop the city as a data center hub, the municipalities of Amsterdam and Haarlemmermeer announced the pause as a response to concerns over operators' demands for land and power.

The pause created a delay for new planning applications, but the Dutch Data Center Association (DDA) has predicted the city will resume approvals during 2020. Contacted by DCD, the DDA managing director Stijn Grove said: "We have made good progress in the talks we have as a sector with the municipalities of Amsterdam and Haarlemmermeer). Together we are now shaping the new data center policies and the long term expansion strategy for data centers. We expect to be finished with that and have the new policies and strategies in place around MayJune." Previously-approved projects are still going ahead, and other parts of the Netherlands have no pause in approvals.

NorthC's announcement promises a "strong local presence" in different parts of the Netherlands, where it will offer custom services for connectivity and hybrid cloud. In particular, the provider says it will be "a reliable regional alternative to the majority of American data center service providers in the Netherlands that are mainly based in Amsterdam."

With one flagship data center in Amsterdam and another nine across the Netherlands, NorthC's launch announcement emphasizes its local strengths: "There is a location nearby for every organization in the Netherlands - linked through a fast connection: the Region Connect Ring."

NorthC CEO Alexandra Schless – NorthC

“There is no other data center player in the Netherlands with a similar presence in different regions,” said a statement from NorthC CEO Alexandra Schless, who joined the company form Equinix in late 2019. “We see that an increasing number of customers are looking for a reliable local data center provider that offers the possibility of doing business with other regional businesses, provides fast connections, but also offers access to international IT providers, networks, and cloud services," she said.

"Five years ago the choice of data center was primarily about things like kilowatts and cooling. Now organizations are faced with the choice, what are you going to place in the cloud, and what is the best way to go about this?"

Colocation customers with their own equipment in a data center need to keep it close by, she said. The name combines "North" showing the company's region, and ‘C’ which stands for "customers, connectivity, cloud, and content,” said the release.

"We welcome the fresh new name of NorthC Data Centers," the DDA's Grove told DCD.. "With their 10 now interconnected data centers that are spread over the country, they are well visible everywhere in all the regions of the Dutch Market."