CenturyLink continues its global managed IT services expansion, announcing Monday night that it is partnering with Australian data center provider NEXTDC Ltd. to deliver managed hybrid IT services to financial services clients and other multinationals in five markets: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra and Perth. (See CenturyLink Expands Into Aussie Data Centers.)
Later this year, the CenturyLink Cloud service will also be available in those Aussie locations. This follows a move into China in late 2014 and the addition of Singapore to its public cloud last month. (See CenturyLink Opens Hosting Site in China and CenturyLink Goes Behind the Great Firewall.)
The driver for the expansion is customer demand, says Drew Leonard, vice president of colocation product management for CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE: CTL). Existing customers in AsiaPac, including Singapore, China, Hong Kong and Japan, are looking to expand into Australia as are customers in North America and the UK, particularly those in financial services, he notes. Through this partnership, CenturyLink can sell them colocation space in Australia and deliver the same set of managed IT services they are buying elsewhere.
In addition, as CenturyLink courts new businesses, the ability to offer them greater reach into more markets is a plus, he says. In addition to financial services companies, applications and cloud service providers are looking to expand into the Australia market.
NEXTDC is an independent data-center-as-a-service provider, Leonard says, and operates data centers very similar to what CenturyLink is running in the US. "We were very fortunate in finding a partner that has the same level of design and build excellence that we have in our own data center," he adds.
The thinking is that multinational companies, particularly those with sensitivity to service quality such as financial services, are happier dealing with fewer IT vendors, in part to reduce complexity but also to control the quality of their services.
CenturyLink already has its own network facilities going into most of the NEXTDC sites, making it easy to turn up services quickly, Leonard notes.
— Carol Wilson, Editor-at-Large, Light Reading