Romania is the best location to set up a data centre in Eastern Europe, according to new research from real estate firm Savills.
The Southeast European country is sixth from the top on Savills’ index of 20 countries that ranks the best places in Europe to invest in a data centre, with only the four Scandinavian states and the Netherlands considered more suitable locations.
Romania is three places above the next ranked country from emerging Europe, the Czech Republic, while Hungary and Poland (the only other states from the region included in the index) are close to the bottom.
Savills uses 12 indicators to rate countries on the index, grading countries on a scale of 1 to 100. Several are related to security — average annual loss liaised to natural disasters, political stability and cybersecurity.
Other factors reflect data centres’ “voracious” appetite for energy; “[F]irst, they need the power to run the IT equipment that they house. Then, because servers emit heat when they are working, they need the power to keep those servers cool enough to work efficiently and reliably. Datacentres are estimated to represent between 3% and 4% of the world power, corresponding to 73 billion kWh,” says Savills. It therefore includes the average annual temperature, average temperature during the peak month of the year, electricity production per capita and electricity price and availability of green energy per capita on its ranking. Data centres are also hungry for water, hence the inclusion of availability of fresh water per capita.
Finally, the index assesses internet average speed and the FTTH/B (fibre to the home/fibre to building) penetration rate.
It’s perhaps not surprising that the Nordic nations take four of the top five slots, “given their strengths in offering low energy costs, cool weather and access to water,” says the report.
Romania, meanwhile, “has seen an accelerated development from the perspective of the IT&C industry, backed by the market entry of renowned companies (Amazon, Fitbit) and by the expansion of existing major players (Microsoft, HP),” said Codrin Matei, managing partner and head of capital markets for Savills’ partner Crosspoint in Romania.
“From this perspective, the rise of investment in data centres will just be a matter of time and they will probably target Bucharest and IT hubs such as Cluj, Timisoara, Iasi.” Matei added.