Saudi Arabia's centrality with a network of under-sea cables enhances its prospects as the region's data centre hub. Image Credit: Reuters

Dubai: The first of the data centres in Saudi Arabia owned and operated by Dubai headquartered Damac will go live in Riyadh and Dammam this year.

A further 35MW capacity will be built in addition to the 20MW already under construction, Damac confirmed at Leap 2023. Each facility will launch with 5MW IT capacity in Q4-2023, followed by a further 5MW in Q1-2024.

Both facilities will deliver 55MW of IT capacity by 2025. The investment in the Kingdom of around $600 million is part of $1 billion data centre development strategy on the part of Damac, whose primary interests are in real estate and hospitality services.

“KSA holds a unique position in the MENA region - Its borders touch more countries than almost any other and it is an ideal jumping off point for connecting across Africa and the GCC,” said Hussain Sajwani, Chairman.

“Our facilities in Dammam and Riyadh offer local diversity as well as rapid access to subsea cable systems that serve regional and global needs.

“KSA has a young, digitally savvy population and a lot to offer in terms of digital innovation and smart cities. We look forward to supporting the growth of its digital economy.”

The Kingdom is connected by 14 in-service subsea cables, 11 of which land in Jeddah. The national fibre network offers ‘terrestrial connectivity to all major Gulf markets and acts as a gateway to key regional submarine cable landing stations’.

Accelerated the launch cycle
Damac has accelerated its data centre rollouts, as customers finalise agreements to secure all available capacity within these facilities, with deals closing before the end of 2023. The Dammam and Riyadh facilities are Uptime Institute certified Tier 3 classification.