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France-based web hosting provider OVH Group announced this week that it plans to raise $327 million to extend its cloud services business and add to its data center fleet. The company said its goal is to expand its business into previously untapped international markets.  

The company announced via its official blog that the cash infusion will come from a combination of bank loans ($196 million) and private bond issues ($131 million).

Solid financial results
Via twitter, OVH founder Octave Klaba cited “solid financial results” as the driver for a $490 million investment in international business development by the end of 2017, including the $327 in debt raised to fund the expansion.

“The goal is to provide the means to become a key player in the global cloud, able to compete with the big American companies”, said Nicolas Boyer, CFO of OVH, in a statement. Boyer confirmed that the debt raised would be part of an overall $490 million international business development plan, with the remaining amount to be self-funded.

“We can then intensify the deployment of our data center and network infrastructures, supporting our customers in the cloud while capturing new markets”, he added.

The financing deal may be a pre-cursor to OVH going public, according to Le Figaro. "This transaction has allowed us to vary our sources of financing and test the appetite of private investors", Boyer commented. He told the French daily this week that an IPO would be the “next logical step.” 

OHV operates 17 data centers, with three in Canada and the rest in France. The company currently serves its North America-based customers from three data centers in the Montreal area. This geographic limitation prevents OVH from expanding its US-based business outside of the Midwest and East Coast. 

Although there are no official expansion plans, an OVH spokesperson told DatacenterDynamics the company would target the West Coast of North America, but whether this will be in the US or Canada is uncertain. The same spokesperson said the company would also look to expand into Asia, but that no specifics on location were available at this time.