Global colocation and interconnection provider Equinix is building another data center in Helsinki, Finland, the first phase of which it hopes to bring online in the second quarter of next year.

The investment in Finland, it says, was driven by growing demand for interconnection capacity in the area - though at this stage, it is fair to assume that the company has enough cash flow to anticipate demand - which it added is ideally located between Europe's baltic states, Russia, and Western Europe, offering direct routes to all three.

Hei again

Lutheran Cathedral, Helsinki, Finland – Getty Images

In addition to direct connectivity to local Finnish businesses - with an emphasis on financial services, content and digital media companies - customers will be given access to the company's software-defined Cloud Exchange Fabric, a global interconnection platform launched last year, as well as to its own Internet exchange on site.

This alleged customer demand is backed by a survey of IT executives published by the company today, which claims that 65 percent of respondents consider proximity to cloud service providers a must when selecting a data center location.

The first phase of HE7 will cost the company approximately €17m ($20m), starting off with 250 cabinets and eventually expanding to 1,475 in future build-outs.

Sami Holopainen, Equinix's managing director for Finland said that many of the company's local customers "are looking to grow their presence as they require interconnection to cloud and SaaS providers to support IT transformation goals."

He added: "As these businesses consider their options they realize the value of a future-proof environment for their digital journey. Platform Equinix is more than 200 data centers – it is a platform for innovation."

Equinix has International Business Exchange (IBX) data centers in 52 regions worldwide, including 62 in Europe. As well building additional locations in Bulgaria and London, the company is expanding facilities in the UK capital, Milan and Zurich.

In an interview with DCD earlier this year, the company's president for EMEA, Eric Schwartz, said that he expected the European market to continue being an area of strong growth for the company, and to expect more diversification into secondary markets - outside of the traditional Frankfurt, London, Amsterdam and Paris (FLAP) locations.

However, the survey mentioned above is a reminder that companies - perhaps optimistically - believe that London will continue to dominate the local data center market, with 64 percent of participants stating that the UK remains the best place to interconnect with businesses and cloud service providers in Europe.