Global data centre firm 5NINES has opened Northern Ireland’s largest data centre following a £20 million investment.

The 45,000-sq-ft colocation facility, which is the first of its kind in Northern Ireland, is based at the 40-acre Atlantic Link Enterprise Campus, Coleraine in the region’s first Enterprise Zone.

The centre, situated just yards from the landing point of the Project Kelvin low latency transatlantic fibre cable, is the first commercial carrier-neutral data centre in Northern Ireland.

The highly resilient and secure data centre has opened with the first of six phased data halls — each of which will house over 200 racks - and is now ready for occupation.

 “This truly is a world-class facility for Northern Ireland providing a highly-efficient and exceptionally resilient high security data centre with the flexibility to satisfy small customer to wholesale requirements,” said Paul Besley, general manager, 5NINES NI.

“We are the closest data centre to North America and have the fastest connectivity there for any UK data centre. We also have an enviable position of being a well-connected UK data centre within a very short distance of Dublin and the post-Brexit EU market. This centre allows all data to be collected, stored and processed locally from a purpose-built modern facility. The fact that we are the only commercial carrier-neutral data centre in Northern Ireland, meaning we are not tied to any one telecommunications provider, offers a new level of flexibility for our clients. Also, being located with the Project Kelvin transatlantic cable gives our customers access to the fastest connectivity to the USA.,” Besley added.

“We offer clients remote hands support services, 24 hours a day, no matter where they are based in the world, while registered users will also be free to enter the centre at any stage via controlled vehicle and pedestrian access. The centre includes purpose-built equipment build rooms giving clients a secure space to unbox, set up and test their servers while we’ve created hot desking and office space to provide a perfect environment to work from while installations are completed. These facilities are all available to our customers, large and small.

“Our number one priority is the security of the data companies choose to store here. That’s why the entire centre is covered by CCTV surveillance while all systems are backed up to ensure there is virtually no chance of an outage,” Besley concluded.

5NINES owns and operates a network of data centres across the world, including in the Netherlands, Finland, France, and the United States.

It is the first business to open at Atlantic Link, Northern Ireland’s first Enterprise Zone.

“The opening of the 5NINES data centre marks a significant milestone in the development of the Atlantic Link enterprise campus. As the first enterprise zone to be established in Northern Ireland, the ground-breaking campus is ideally placed to realise our vision for creating a digital and creative economy for home-grown businesses and international investment,” said Brenda Chivers, Mayor of Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council.

“We are thrilled to see the opening of the data centre on the site and look forward to welcoming more businesses as they take advantage of the tax benefits, beyond the existing business advantage,” Chivers added.

Northern Ireland Chamber of Commerce chief executive Ann McGregor welcomed the development.

 “It is good to see a business forming close to the landing station of Project Kelvin which connects Northern Ireland to North America via the GTT North submarine cable system. 5NINES, the new data centre at Atlantic Link will be able to take advantage of the infrastructure available. We hope that it is the first of many. It is also a very positive development for Northern Ireland businesses to have a data centre service on their door step,” said McGregor.