Promoting digital autonomy to foster development
In 2019, STOA acquired a stake in Etix Everywhere (“Etix”), a global developer and operator of data centers. Data center development is a key economic, social and political concern for emerging countries.
Since its creation, Etix Everywhere has expanded its global data center network, with a particular focus on the development of Edge data centers in emerging countries. Based in France, the company has twelve centers around the world, providing a total of more than 50 MW of colocation capacity. The support provided by STOA, along with other international investors, has opened up the opportunity for Etix to move into emerging markets.
STOA’s investment has also strengthened Etix Everywhere’s foothold in Africa with the deployment of state-of-the-art data centers, notably in Morocco and Ghana (Tier IV).
By investing in Etix, STOA aims to promote a clean and efficient digital environment:
- Etix’s projects focus on more energy-efficient data centers, some of which are even aiming to be powered by their own solar farms. In addition to offering a response to the “climate” challenges posed by digital technology, this type of initiative also helps to meet the operational need for electricity supply in countries where the national power grid encounters numerous outages.
- In addition, Etix complies with the most rigorous technical and environmental standards, demonstrating STOA’s commitment to working with best-in-class counterparts in these areas. Etix was sold by STOA in 2020.
What’s at stake
Strengthening the performance of the local private and public sector
Data centers are a cornerstone of digital development in emerging markets and are vital to sustaining growth. They help improve the analytical capacity of local companies (e.g., analytical processing of databases, etc.) and therefore their overall performance.
These centers enable data to be processed and stored locally and have various beneficial effects, including reducing latency for businesses and public authorities.
Meaningful social impact
The high cost of Internet access is due to the limited capacity of expensive international connections (submarine cables and satellites). This is particularly true in landlocked countries that are not connected, whether directly or indirectly via their neighboring countries. Local data hosting promotes the use of national bandwidth and will have the effect of reducing the retail price of telephone and Internet services for consumers, also helping to increase information access.
Critical infrastructure for the governance and sovereignty of emerging countries
Data centers are particularly important for the emergence of local digital services and to support administrations’ digital transition (e-governance, electronic ID cards, etc.). They ensure the strengthening of public services by enabling continuity and a substantial gain in productivity for government agencies.
Data centers also meet the need to guarantee the autonomy of emerging countries in terms of data storage and management. There is a real hosting deficit in emerging countries, with the vast majority of data hosted abroad. This technical concern often goes hand in hand with regulatory requirements to host certain data on national territory (electoral lists, health data, banking data, etc.).
Impact results measured in 2019
- 2 data centers deployed at the end of 2019 in Morocco and Ghana
- High availability – aiming for 100% – of Etix Everywhere’s data centers to ensure a maximum service level
” We are delighted by the support we have from our existing shareholders and new investors, including STOA. We now provide more than 50 MW of colocation capacity through our network of 12 data centers. This new funding round will support our three business targets, including developing Edge data centers in Europe and emerging markets. ”
Antoine Boniface, CEO of Etix Everywhere.
DATA CENTERS DEPLOYED AT THE END OF 2019 IN MOROCCO AND GHANA
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