WASHINGTON, DC—A new national data centeroperator has been formed out of a pair of companies wholly owned byASB Real Estate Investments, headquartered here.Dallas Infomart and Fortune Data Centers, both wholly owned byASB's Allegiance Real Estate Fund, have merged under the nameInfomart Data Centers. The combined company willmanage a 2.2-million-square-foot, 100-megawatt portfolio, includinga new facility outside Washington, DC that's set to open in2015.

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The new facility, to be located in Ashburn, VA—arguably the datacenter hub of the US—will join the 1.3-million-square-footDallas Infomart and a pair of facilities inPortland, OR and in San Jose, where Infomart Data Centers is nowheadquartered. “After building a national portfolio of some of theindustry's most successful data center properties, we reached ascale where it made sense to form an extremely well-capitalizedoperator, backed and owned by the fund, to manage our assets on anational basis in the best interests of our investors and tenants,”says David Quigley, ASB's CIO.

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“From four of the most important markets in the country, we arenow positioned to serve the dynamic needs of our existing andfuture customers, who are often looking for extended locationoptions with a trusted, highly capable provider,” says JohnSheputis, formerly head of Fortune and the newly namedpresident of the combined company. “Our extended footprint sets astrong national foundation for anticipated future growth fromexisting tenants, new customers and the hiring of additionalstaff.”

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Infomart's Ashburn facility was acquired from AOL this pastAugust for approximately $33.8 million, according to Real CapitalAnalytics. The 14-year-old, 180,039-square-foot property willundergo extensive renovations to increase capacity and update it tocurrent standards. Last month, GlobeSt.com reported thatGriffin Capital Essential Asset REIT made itsfirst foray into the data center sector,paying $148.4 million to take an 80% stake in a nearby data centerowned by San Francisco-based Digital Realty.

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The data center market domestically is expected to grow 4% thisyear to reach $156 billion, according to technology research firmGartner Inc. Increasing IT capacity requirements, combined withreduced budgets and the need to access new technologies, arefueling growth, says DCD Intelligence in a 2014 report.

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Paul Bubny

Paul Bubny is managing editor of Real Estate Forum and GlobeSt.com. He has been reporting on business since 1988 and on commercial real estate since 2007. He is based at ALM Real Estate Media Group's offices in New York City.