The UK remains Europe’s largest data centre market – what are the investment prospects?

The UK data centre market now represents the largest in Europe and will become a 2GW market in the next few years.

To date investment has focused on London which represents around 80% of the market (Source: CBRE) and surrounding areas concentrated across industrial parks and estates.

Wholesale demand by single user site players remains in the majority however colocation retail is in the ascendant particularly for media and financial services companies.

Among other drivers, digital transformation and 5G uptake across the UK will generate higher levels of data traffic which in turn leads to growth in demand for IT infrastructure and the requirement for more storage and processing power. UK data centres will be responsible for storing more than USD 135 bn worth of data annually by 2025 (Source: Digital Realty Data Economy Report). The UK is connectivity rich, with around 56 submarine cables. 2Africa, Amitie, and BT North Sea are three upcoming submarine cables connecting the UK to major markets worldwide.

However as supply constraints prevail, and diminishing space availability in the South-East, investors – both private equity as well as end user Hyperscales – are assessing sites with power availability and connectivity in tier II and III markets. Opportunities across the UK – Scotland, Northern Ireland, the North, Manchester, Wales and other regions – are emerging quickly reflecting changes elsewhere in Europe.

Yet the advent of AI requires decisive moves to assure the UK remains competitive. It adds more complexity than is perhaps recognized but also another substantial new driver to demand especially in power and will require investment in the new build of facilities, energy grid and infrastructure.

Mega deals are predicted for the UK because of higher costs involved with data centre build outs and the intensity of the competitive landscape.

In this timely symposium investors and the leadership of data centre businesses meet to discuss the investment outlook for the UK market and provide insight into the fast moving directions and changes that data centres are experiencing.

What the event will cover

  • UK Data Centre Market Analysis
  • Investor perspective on outlook for UK deals, mergers and acquisitions 
  • UK datacenter leadership plans for investment and growth 
  • Real Estate perspective – secondary data centre market development and new site opportunities in the UK
  • How vibrant is Edge in the UK?
  • Is the UK fully prepared for AI and its impact? 
  • Is the UK government investment in AI sufficient ? 
  • How will UK grids respond to increased renewable energy demand brought by AI?
  • Market outlook and competitive strengths and weakness of the UK

Speakers and full programme will be announced soon.