Verizon Communications is hoping to raise more than $2.5 billion from a sale of its data center assets, according to a report from Reuters.
The report, which cites sources close to the matter, says the operator is auctioning some 48 data centers that currently generate EBITDA of about $275 million.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) appears eager to reduce its asset base and focus more heavily on its core services business, having already sold parts of its fixed-line operation and some of its mobile towers last year.
In November, Verizon was reported to be looking into a $10 billion sale of its enterprise unit, prompting speculation that it had given up trying to compete against web-scale players in the market for cloud services.
However, Verizon CFO Fran Shammo quickly dismissed those reports as "fact-less conjecture," telling attendees at a Wells Fargo conference that there was "no foundation behind these comments." (See Verizon CFO Dismisses Enterprise Sale Rumors.)
Operators including AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) and Verizon have already given up fighting web-scale giants in the market for public cloud services, instead choosing to focus on providing secure connections to hybrid clouds.
According to Heavy Reading principal analyst Caroline Chappell, operators' asset requirements will change dramatically in the coming years as they base their cloud service offerings on SDN and NFV technologies.
"Telcos won't need so many big, centralized data centers to run them -- but lots of smaller, distributed locations that take advantage of their network footprint," she said in an earlier Light Reading story. (See Verizon Enterprise Sale Would Signal Big Shift.)
— Iain Morris, , News Editor, Light Reading