Brand-Rex opens doors to new Customer Experience Centre and R&D labs

Brand-Rex, the leading data networking solutions provider, hosted customers and local community representatives at the official opening ceremony for the new R&D laboratory and Customer Experience Centre in Glenrothes, Scotland. Guest of Honour was Sir David Murray Chairman of Murray Capital.

Martin Hanchard, CEO Brand-Rex said:” We are delighted to welcome so many good friends of Brand-Rex to the official opening ceremony of what represents a significant investment in the future of the company. The new facilities not only demonstrate our continued commitment to basic research and innovation but also the faith we place in a highly qualified and creative engineering team here in Glenrothes.

“We operate in a fast evolving and extremely competitive global market place that demands constant innovation in new enabling technologies. With this investment and additional investments planned in our High Performance Laboratories in Leigh, Manchester we are further extending our ability to meet the needs of our customers today and into the future wherever the internet of things may take us.”

Kennedy Miller, technology and ecology manager, guided attendees through the company’s outstanding commitment to the environment highlighting the company’s carbon neutral status and the introduction of a range of carbon neutral products. Brand-Rex is set to meet its target of 25% carbon reduction during 2015.

Miller explained that sustainability is not only about social responsibility, it’s a profitable activity. “A £300k investment has resulted in £1million of cost savings over three years,” he said, “and of course the cost savings recur each year.” Miller also mentioned a number of large projects secured for which the company’s ecological credentials had been a key deciding factor.

Technical marketing manager, Eddie McGinley, explained the company’s R&D roadmap including new products for 40 Gigabit/s, 100 Gigabit/s and 400 Gigabit/s applications. He explained the need for constant R&D and new higher speed products to meet the datacentre and enterprise markets’ requirements to handle an exponentially growing amount of data transmission.

Brand-Rex chief administration officer George Hannides gave the local flavour by outlining the company’s involvement in the local community supporting youth activities, schools and local charities. He also announced that Brand-Rex would be increasing its local support by 25 per cent in the following year.

Who on Earth would use a Data Centre in Norfolk?

GVA0059-MigsolvNorfolkDataCentre_Hall1-of-two_DataHalls“Who wouldn’t, if they knew that facts?” was the reply from Charles Carden, director at GVA Connect, the specialist data centre division of international real estate agent GVA.

Announcing the availability of some 30,000 square feet or 1,200 racks-worth of space which is ready for customer install in this operational data centre; Carden explained that, in terms of terrorist threat levels and costs, the Gatehouse data centre operated by MigSolv in Norwich is on a different plane to those in The City and in urban centres.

“With the UK currently on a ‘Severe’ terrorist threat alert, we all know that the capital, London, and other major cities are the key targets. Norfolk on the other hand is not seen to be on any likely target list, and as such is a much lower risk area for highly critical storage and data processing,” Carden continued.

The MigSolv Gatehouse data centre not only benefits from being ‘out of the way’ and not in the line of terrorist threat, it has nonetheless been built to the highest levels of security and sustainability.

Two large data halls are separated by a massive bomb-blast earth mound so that in the very unlikely eventuality of an event at one, the other is fully protected. The perimeter of the nine acre site is protected by a three metre steel fence with microwave intrusion detection along its entire length. Plus, there’s CCTV and infra-red on the outside of the site and biometrics on the inside so there’s no possibility of unwanted visitors to your racks.

“It will be a surprise to many people,” says Carden, “but there’s quite a large technology community in Norwich – meaning that MigSolv doesn’t have to farm out its facilities management or security. The entire site is staffed by MigSolv employees.”

The site is very well connected, with a number of mainstream Tier 1 carriers on site with dual redundant connectivity. And, unlike London, the electrical supply is not in short supply. Norwich has an abundance of power availability and the site also has UPS and generators provided on an ‘n+1’ basis for guaranteed 99 per cent uptime.

Many of the London data centres are in London Docklands which according to the UK Environment Agency is on a 20 year flood-plane (that means on average it floods every twenty years). The Gatehouse data centre is 39m above sea level, in other words the likelihood of flooding is: probably never.

Another big plus for clients of the MigSolv Gatehouse data centre is that the entire site is PCI DSS compliant for the processing and storage of credit card and other financial transaction data. Surprisingly few data centres carry this accreditation. A long list of accreditations and standards employed can be found on the MigSolv website here: http://www.migsolv.com

“Unlike many of the data centre properties available through GVA Connect, this data centre is up and running with fully operational technical space available immediately,” said Carden, adding that parties interested in discussion requirements from one rack through to 30,000 square feet should contact him on +44 207 911 2529 or charles.carden@gva.co.uk.

Ends

 

London’s West Thurrock Set To Become The New ‘Slough’ for Outer London Data Centres

GVA Connect, the agent for London’s 50MVA Gateway Data Centre in West Thurrock today reveals that new connectivity to the site via Zayo networks puts the entire West Thurrock site at the centre of both pan-European and US fibre networks – seeding the area as the second major outer London data centre park to eventually rival Slough.

Said Charles Carden, director of GVA Connect, the specialist data centre division of international real estate agent GVA, “We had already announced significant connectivity for the Gateway Data Centre in West Thurrock, but the potential of the Zayo dual redundant diverse routed fibre network into the equation is a total game changer for the area.”

The Zayo network, which is within 50m of the site, diversely passes the East and North cable entry points and offers a diversely routed 432 cable enabling pan-European and US fibre networks for occupiers and a full suite of network services; dark fibre, WDM networks, MPLS/ VPLS networks, VPN’s and Tier-1 IP services.

The network (see long haul network map here http://turt.co/dcme52) has diverse routing to major data centre locations London Docklands and Slough as well as direct to Amsterdam, Paris, Frankfurt, Dublin and the USA.

The Gateway Data Centre facility is located close to the M25 London Orbital motorway and with easy physical and electronic access to the UK’s financial centres in The City and London Docklands.

Gateway Data Centre consists of a 2.3 hectare site designed to have 8,000 square metres (86,000 sq. ft.) of white space with a gross internal floor area of 19,500 square metres (210,000 sq. ft.). With up to 50MVA of power potentially available, the Gateway Data Centre is ideal for high density as well as normal density computing uses and is only a few kilometres away from the New York Stock Exchange’s disaster recovery and European Hub data centre in Basildon.

The new Gateway Data Centre already has all necessary planning permissions and is a secure site within an existing trading estate. It can be rapidly delivered as either: ‘Shell and Core’, ‘Powered Shell’, or it can be ‘Fully Fitted’ to customer requirements.
The connectivity possibilities announced today are in addition to those offered by BT, KPN, Vodafone (Cable and Wireless), Level 3 and Fujitsu whose own data centre is a very close neighbour in this area. Further data centres in this West Thurrock area are already being planned.

Fully consented plans are available for the Gateway Data Centre including the conversion of the existing building and these can be viewed by contacting Charles Carden at GVA Connect’s London Stratton Street office. Or visit www.gatewaydatacentre.co.uk
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Brand-Rex announced as European Business Awards Finalist

Brand-Rex, the leading data networking solutions provider, has been announced as one of twelve UK finalists for the 2014 European Business Awards for the Environment (EBAE).

The company’s entry into the awards is a direct result of its success in the prestigious Scottish VIBES Awards (Vision In Business for the Environment in Scotland) in the Management category in 2011 and the Energy Management and Efficiency category last year.

“We are proud to have been selected as one of the only four UK finalists in the Management category”, said Martin Hanchard, CEO, Brand-Rex. “It is testament to the efforts of the team to achieve such international recognition for our efforts to make Brand-Rex the most sustainable network cabling company.”.

“For Brand-Rex, environmental considerations are a firm part of technology and innovation processes. Feedback from our customers and partners encourages us to continue this way. I would encourage every company to follow our lead as properly managed ecology actually pays dividends in profitability as well as global citizenship.”

The EBAE awards are presented by the European Commission every two years and aim to recognise and reward European companies that set an example by successfully bringing together innovation, economic viability and environmental concerns.

Brand-Rex technology and sustainability manager Kennedy Miller adds: ”We take our environmental responsibility very seriously and have an audited track record to prove it.

“Our environmental processes and policies already go further than legally required and we intend to stay ahead in years to come.”

There are four award categories in which companies are rewarded for management practices, products, processes and international business cooperation activities that contribute to economic and social development without detriment to the environment.  Brand-Rex is competing in the Management category for the The Pathway to Carbon Neutrality and 2015 for 2020: 20 Steps we can make by 2015 for a better vision of our future projects and will compete on the European stage against winners from 28 countries.

The Awards Ceremony will take place on 1st December 2014 in Lyon.

 

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About the European Business Awards for the Environment:

The European Business Awards for the Environment were established by the European Commission Environment Directorate-General in 1987.

EBAE activities take place at both national and European levels, with participation open to companies from all EU Member States and candidate countries. Companies must first succeed in their national competition, before they can participate in the bi-annual European Business Awards for the Environment. Submission of entries is managed by national coordinating bodies. This two-level process means EBAE winners are the best of the best: the most far-sighted, responsible and innovative companies in Europe.

http://ec.europa.eu/environment/awards/index.html

 

ABOUT BRAND-REX

Brand-Rex is a global operation, designing, developing and manufacturing the most sophisticated, high performance copper and fibre cabling systems for communications and extreme environment applications.  Headquartered in Scotland, the company is committed to being a trusted market leading provider of best-in-class communications infrastructure solutions. As well as developing products and systems of the highest quality, the company is entirely carbon neutral and offsets all the CO2 created by the manufacture and distribution of its products. For more information visit www.brand-rex.com

 

For further press information please contact:

Katrin Naefe on: +44(0)1295 256138

e-mail: Katrin.naefe@turtleconsulting.com

or

Phil Turtle on: +44 (0) 7867 780676

e-mail: phil.turtle@turtleconsulting.com

Turtle Consulting Group   

 

 

Brand-Rex scales the heights at Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower

Brand-Rex has been awarded a project to provide network infrastructure for the prestigious Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower, further demonstrating its strength in the Middle East region and in particular its commitment to the Qatar market.

Currently undergoing construction in the prestigious West Bay district of Doha in the state of Qatar, Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower will be a state-of-the-art hotel and residential apartment building. As the most recently developed area of the city, West Bay is home to some of its tallest and most impressive buildings, with 40 storeys within its striking design, Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower will be in good company.

Located close to the beach in what is the diplomatic centre of Doha, the area attracts some of the city’s top executives and government officials. Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower’s owners will be looking to appeal to this demographic and therefore the project’s design consultant, MZ & Partners, is making every effort to ensure that it contains the very best building services infrastructure, incorporating the latest technology.

The consultants, MZ & Partners and main contractor SAK Trading & Contracting recognised early on in the design phase that in order to create an ‘intelligent building’ the correct IT network infrastructure would be vital. They demanded a network cabling system capable of supporting network speeds of 10 Gigabit Ethernet, in order to support a diverse array of building services technology including wired and wireless Internet, IP security and access control.

After completing a tender process, local IT expert, Zerone Technologies, was awarded the contract to specify, design, supply and install a suitable network infrastructure. The company’s senior sales manager, Sourabh Singh, explains, ‘We have developed an excellent reputation for our ability to provide best in class technology for a range of projects and boast a dedicated and highly motivated service oriented team. After listening to the requirements of MZ & Partners I had no hesitation in recommending a solution from Brand-Rex comprising 10GPlus copper for the horizontal connectivity and premises distribution cables (PDC) from the company’s FibrePlus portfolio for the backbone.’

Zerone Technologies has worked with Brand-Rex for many years and, as a Premier Partner, is able to issue its globally renowned 25-year system warranty. Singh comments, ‘We have completed many installations of 10GPlus and have always been thoroughly impressed with its capabilities. The warranty means that our customers have peace of mind that their chosen solution will perform as expected for the lifetime of the installation.’

10GPlus is a 3P (Third Party Testing) approved cabling system that not only meets and exceeds the performance outlined in EIA/TIA for Category 6A, but also meets and exceeds requirements in ISO/IEC for Class EA. The 10GPlus system therefore has unparalleled levels of certification and is manufactured in accordance with ISO 14001 and ISO 9001:2008.

After discussing the relative merits of shielded and unshielded cable, it was decided to use the latter. Asked why, Alaa Habanjar, country manager for Qatar, Kuwait and Levant?at Brand-Rex, replies, ‘Although there was some initial concern regarding the ability of unshielded twisted pair to achieve 10 Gigabit Ethernet performance due to alien crosstalk issues, Brand-Rex 10GPlus U/UTP has a unique Reuleaux shaped cable that reduces interference from adjacent cables and incorporates very highly balanced pairs. Its performance is also independently verified in 100m length testing for both the cable and the channel configurations.’

As well as installing 10GPlus, the specification also called for a fibre optic cabling backbone. Sourabh Singh says, ‘We wanted a solution that offered high levels of resilience and, due to the building’s use, an outstanding level of fire safety performance. The PDC range from Brand-Rex met all of these requirements and more.’

The Brand-Rex PDC products are compact and provider excellent tensile performance. The cables are based on a 900?m tight-buffered fibre. The universal construction enables them to be used internally and externally without the need for transition cable joints. With a low smoke zero halogen (LSZH) construction, they will be installed in the entire backbone of Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower’s network and directly terminated at a consolidation points.

With the building programme currently on schedule, the project will be completed by 2016. The final word goes to Zerone Technologies’ Sourabh Singh, who concludes, ‘The network cabling infrastructure we are installing using products from Brand-Rex will ensure that Al Abdul Wahab Gholam Tower is able to offer its occupants the very best communications platform, while maximising the potential of its building services technology.’

ENDS

745 words

ABOUT BRAND-REX
Brand-Rex is a global operation, designing, developing and manufacturing the most sophisticated, high performance copper and fibre cabling systems for communications and extreme environment applications. Headquartered in Scotland, the company is committed to being a trusted market leading provider of best-in-class communications infrastructure solutions. As well as developing products and systems of the highest quality, the company is entirely carbon neutral and offsets all the CO2 created by the manufacture and distribution of its products. For more information visit www.brand-rex.com

For further press information please contact:
Katrin Naefe on: +44(0)1295 256138
e-mail: Katrin.naefe@turtleconsulting.com
or
Phil Turtle on: +44 (0) 7867 780676
e-mail: phil.turtle@turtleconsulting.com
Turtle Consulting Group

16,000 Internet Retailers Flouting The Law. Research Findings from UK Internet Watchdog SafeBuy

Research conducted by Internet retailing watchdog SafeBuy has revealed that Internet retailing is something of a ‘Wild West’ with massive numbers of retailers flouting the law.

Announcing the research, Richard Jones, founder and CEO of SafeBuy and the UK’s leading expert on web retailing websites said, “a shocking one quarter (25 per cent) of the small and medium enterprises (SMEs) surveyed were found to be committing breaches of legal requirements for online trading.

“These included flouting the most basic requirements that every Internet retailer should be aware of and should comply with. For example, displaying a proper geographic address, a contact phone number and an email address. Plus having a legally-compliant goods returns policy.”

SafeBuy was set up in 2003 following the closure of the ‘Which? Web Trader Scheme’. It provides consumer confidence by producing and policing a comprehensive Code of Best Practice for the UK’s Internet retailing sector. SafeBuy assesses websites for compliance with this code of practice and with relevant UK and EU trading laws. Websites which pass the accreditation are able to display the SafeBuy Consumer Care confidence mark on their website.

SafeBuy also operates a comprehensive web retailer star rating scheme (accessed via the SafeBuy Stars logo on appropriate sites) which is moderated and cannot be influenced or ‘fixed’ by the retailers and thus gives a highly accurate consumer rating of that retailer.

To back up the Code of Practice, the organisation operates a Mediation Service, which has brought satisfactory outcomes to almost 2,500 consumers who had complaints against internet retailers. This service is completely free to consumers in relation to SafeBuy-accredited retailers.

Said SafeBuy CEO Richard Jones, “All of SafeBuy’s services are designed to give consumers confidence and safety in their online shopping. Whenever they see the SafeBuy logo displayed by an online retailer they can be confident that it is a good, law abiding, retailer to do business with.”

The research reviewed 225 random SME websites that are not accredited by SafeBuy. The research found that:
• Seven per cent did not advise the customer before paying that they have a legal “right of return” if they change their mind after ordering.
• Six per cent did not provide a geographic address where they conduct their business from. This is a legal requirement.
• An astounding twenty per cent did not publish a contact e-mail address. The frequently used ‘contact us form’ is not an alternative. On this matter the law is unequivocal, stating: ‘… the details of the service provider, including his electronic mail address, which makes it possible to contact him rapidly… must be displayed’.

Commenting on the findings, Jones said, “there are an estimated 65,000 UK online retailing sites that are not yet accredited by SafeBuy. Extrapolating the research findings could mean some 16,250 of those websites are not complying with the law.

“One highly unacceptable finding of the research”, he continued, “was the number of websites which attempt to prevent consumers from being aware of their legal rights. A significant number of websites went to shocking lengths to prevent consumers exercising their legal right of return. We found many examples like these:
‘We will use our discretion in deciding whether to accept a return.’
‘If you open the packaging you can’t return the products.’
“If you’ve tested the product… you’ll have to pay us a fee.’
But the research team’s absolute favourite was:
‘Returns must be in perfect condition.’
which to our minds at SafeBuy tries to rule out sending back any faulty or damaged-in-transit goods. These statements are all most clearly illegal!”

Does your website break the law? A checklist
SafeBuy’s mission is to make a web shopping as safe as possible for consumers – so here is a 10-point checklist for web retailers and consumers:
1. Does the website display the consumer’s rights to return unwanted goods. And is there a clear ‘How To Return’ section?
2. Does the website clearly display a geographic address, contact email and phone number – not just a ‘contact us’ form?
3. Is the method and cost of delivery clearly indicated before the order is placed?
4. Is the security level for each online payment option clearly shown?
5. Does the website tell the consumer how to lodge a complaint and what the complaint procedure is?
6. Does the website clearly show the contract terms – including guarantees and warranties? And does it clearly state that these do not affect the consumer’s statutory rights?
7. Does the site clearly state that all the consumer’s data will be kept private in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and the EC Communications Directive 2003?
8. Does the website state that the retailer adheres to the terms of the UK Sale of Goods Act and the EU Distance Selling Regulations?
9. Are phone numbers on the website for queries relating to an order charged at no more than the normal UK inland rate? If technical support lines are charged at a premium rate is this clearly stated?
10. Does the site display the SafeBuy accreditation logo to give consumers absolute confidence that all of these factors and many more have been independently verified?

Web retailers and consumers can read the SafeBuy code of practice (from which these 10 points are taken) for Internet retailing at safebuy.org.uk

How traders can ensure compliance
Web retailers who wants to be sure they comply with law and the code of practice for internet retailing should contact SafeBuy and go through the accreditation process which, once they are fully compliant, will permit them to display the SafeBuy consumer confidence logo on their website. For details go to safebuy.org.uk

People Power needed
In conclusion, SafeBuy’s Jones said, “This situation with potentially over 16,000 internet retailers contravening the law is frankly outrageous. We knew that there were ‘dodgy traders’ out there but this number of online retailers breaking the law is patently unacceptable. What we now need is ‘People Power’ based on consumers educating themselves on their rights and taking retailers to task.

“To help everybody we’ve published a free quick 5-point checklist for consumers at http://care.safebuy.org.uk/ and a much more comprehensive free 8-point checklist for retailers with loads more information to help them in both legal and marketing terms also at safebuy.org.uk

“If a web retailer is not a subscriber to the SafeBuy accreditation scheme consumers should challenge them as to why they are not. And if you have a problem with them go straight to your Citizens Advice Bureau or use the cheap and easy Small Claims Court process to get satisfaction.”

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Additional background:

• SafeBuy is not a trade association – it is an independent standards body.
• Started in 2003 after Which? closed its WebTrader scheme.
• Initiated work with the OFT in 2006 under the Enterprise Act of Parliament to define a general Code of Practice for web retailers.
• OFT-agreed text for Code-of-Conduct first released in 2007.
• Focused entirely on SMEs – big names (Tesco, M&S) will trade on their own reputation.
• Mediated on almost 2,500 consumer complaints against Code-approved retailers over seven years – out of 28 million transactions; 98% success rate with over 500 emails of consumer thanks.
• SafeBuy ‘Stars’ released in 2012 as the most comprehensive consumer review system in the UK on web retailers.
• The founder and CEO, Richard Jones, appointed ‘UK Leading Expert’ in 2011 by BSI to work with ISO on the world standard (ISO10008) for web retailing.
• It is a matter of record that web retailing in the UK leads the world and SafeBuy leads the UK in defining the standards for, and measuring the performance of, web retailers.

SafeBuy – www.safebuy.org.uk – operates as an independent organisation with its only funding coming from subscribers to its Code of Practice who are retailing on the web. The founder, Richard Jones, came from a background as editor of The Good Software Guide from 1987 to 2002. The Guide’s defining principle was to review PC software with no payments or commissions or advertising from any software makers. Its revenue came from subscribers – mostly corporates and the public sector – including online to all higher education in the UK via the Joint Academic Network.

Whilst editing the Guide, Richard Jones also was a freelance columnist for the Daily Telegraph on software and in 1999 was lead writer and editor for the Sunday Times on the 800-page Millennium Bug Report with a foreword by the Prime Minister, Tony Blair,

Following this principle of completely unbiased reviews and with a passion for informing users of the truth about hundreds of software products it became apparent in 2001 that with the closure of the Which? Webtrader scheme there was no independent research house in the UK setting standards and evaluating web retailers. Hence SafeBuy was born in 2003.

It should be noted that SafeBuy is not a trade association and does not represent its subscribers to anybody. It is an impartial operation setting web retailing standards, recognising effective operations and mediating on disputed issues between consumers and retailers.

In 2010 Richard Jones was appointed by the British Standards Institute to be ‘UK Leading Expert’ representing the BSI on the International Standards Organisation’s working group developing ISO 10008 – the world standard for ecommerce websites, released in 2013.

SafeBuy has three core elements – 1) a comprehensive Code of Practice; 2) a Star Rating scheme for web retailers; and 3) a no-charge mediation operation for dissatisfied consumers.

The Code of Practice
With support from the Department of Trade and Industry in 2003 the SafeBuy Code of Practice was developed, the text of which subsequently became agreed with the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) in 2006 under stage one of the Consumer Codes Approval Scheme (CCAS) authorised by Act of Parliament. See http://care.safebuy.org.uk/code-of-practice/

The CCAS was designed to make buying and selling better for everyone. It helped consumers choose businesses that promised to provide a higher standard of customer service than required by law, including better protection in the event that something goes wrong.

In 2014 SafeBuy has the only comprehensive Code of Practice for the web retailing industry in the UK and remains the only organisation which has worked with the OFT to develop an appropriate Code. Retailers who have committed to conform to the Code are entitled to display the SafeBuy logo on their website.

As a matter of record, since 2003 SafeBuy has removed over 130 subscribers from SafeBuy membership for breaches of the Code.

The Star Rating Scheme
Consumer review schemes have become notorious for being open to distortion and dishonesty including – maybe even especially – in the web retailing industry.

Accordingly SafeBuy has determined five key characteristics for consumer reviews of retailers for its Star Rating operation.

1. The request for a review must go to all consumers who have recently purchased from the retailer. This is achieved by a copy of the order acknowledgement, which is required by law to be sent to the consumer within 24 hours of ordering, being sent to the SafeBuy secure research centre. SafeBuy itself then sends an invitation to review to every customer who has placed an order.

The retailer cannot ‘cherry pick’ the consumers to whom the review opportunity is sent. SafeBuy has additional controls to avoid fake order acknowledgements.

2. All consumer responses are published online as soon as received by SafeBuy with no intervention possible by the retailer. It is known that some supposedly independent review systems allow the retailer to intervene with what becomes published. SafeBuy and the OFT agreed that this open publication requirement was essential.

3. There is no opportunity for the retailer to respond to the consumer’s review in the public arena. There has been a rather insidious idea that the retailer resolving any complaints sometime later makes everything OK. This circumstance perpetuates two fallacies. Firstly, any adverse consumer review already follows a situation which the retailer patently hasn’t resolved until it became public and this fact should be made clear. Secondly, although the retailer is given a public right of reply the consumer is not given any right of comeback again. Hardly a balanced operation and seems to be designed to perpetuate the fallacy that it makes everyone happy when in fact the consumer may have been ‘bought off’..

4. It is wishful thinking that individual consumers can give accurate star ratings. No consumer has the knowledge of what the overall parameters are and what is or isn’t important – except to them. And what one consumer may rate as 4, another may rate as 2. Assembling or averaging these ratings does not make them any more accurate. So the SafeBuy Stars system drills down into individual areas so that any potential customer can see what is good, indifferent or even bad about the retailer in 10 different areas of the business. All the feedback, including the last 20 responses for the retailer, is openly published.

5. As noted, the SafeBuy Star ratings are not subjectively determined by individual consumers. Consumers individually have different priorities. For one it’s speed of delivery. For another it’s telephone support in times of difficulty. So the SafeBuy Star ratings are determined by an algorithm known only to SafeBuy which is based on feedback from almost 2,500 mediations conducted since 2006 and constantly updated. Where overall problems with delivery timescales are most prominent the weighting is high. Where overall problems with support are most significant … and so on. Only SafeBuy is believed to hold comprehensive UK online retail mediation data in this manner.

See http://care.safebuy.org.uk/what-is-safebuy/ and scroll down for more Star Ratings data with further links to a sample successful retailer. Retailers who have a SafeBuy Stars rating of over three stars are entitled to display the SafeBuy Stars logo on their website. Those with consistently under three stars are removed from SafeBuy membership.

Mediations
Since 2006 SafeBuy has conducted almost 2,500 mediations between consumers and retailers. All documentation from either party or the SafeBuy mediator is copied to both parties.

In fact all mediations have proved successful except where, in under 2% of cases, the retailer is no longer trading. It is not possible to check on every SafeBuy subscriber every day but it is a certainty that SafeBuy would know of a problem earlier than almost anybody else because of mediation requests.

In the event of a retailer ceasing to trade SafeBuy advises the consumer of their rights with both credit and debit cards to ensure that they are correctly recompensed. It has been noted over time that staff at the issuing banks sometimes seem not to know either the law or their own rules in the matter, so clear instructions are given to the consumer up to and including involvement with the banking Ombudsman and the Small Claims Court.

SafeBuy holds hundreds of emails of thanks on file from consumers who have used the mediation services. It also notes retailers’ overall experience of SafeBuy accreditation and membership at http://care.safebuy.org.uk/reviews/

In each of the three elements shown above SafeBuy is uniquely positioned as an independent leader in its field. Feedback from SafeBuy has been fed into the ISO 10008 world standard for web retailing. It is a matter of record that web retailing in the UK leads the world and SafeBuy leads the UK and the world in defining the standards for, and measuring the performance of web retailers.
= end of additional information=

 

 

New Research Proves Data Centre Operators Got Their Forecasts Right.

Research Shows Switch from Operators to End-Users
in the Data Centre Market
New research just undertaken by GVA Connect, the data centre specialist division of property agents GVA, showed that the take-up of data centre space by end-users such as enterprises and government agencies was up by a massive 67 per cent over this time last year.

“We reported in February that Data Centre Operators had ramped up their acquisitions of data centre space to some 830,000 square feet,” said GVA Connect director Charles Carden, “this new research shows that Operator commitments are now being rewarded with significant extra uptake of both co-location and wholesale data centre space by end-users.

“Total take-up (including operators and end-users) for the quarter to March 2014 remained comparable to the same period in 2013. Within that, the end-user volume transacted jumped from a total of 3MW in Q1/13 up to a total of 10MW in Q1/14. The average transaction was over 500kW” said Carden, adding that the team at GVA Connect is anticipating an increase in transactional activity from Q3/14 onwards, driven largely from the US.

The new GVA research showed once again that London, as a leading international data centre hub continues to account for the significant proportion of activity, Carden revealed that over 80% of total UK take up in Q1 was within the London Synchronous Locations (locations which deliver round-trip latency of under three milliseconds) with the remainder of uptake spread across the UK.

Said Carden, “this research indicates a healthy increase in overall data centre activity in the UK and continued occupier confidence following the noticeable increase in market enquires reported in Q4/13.”

GVA Connect sees the trend for IT outsourcing as set to continue as corporate IT budgets are relaxed and occupiers seeks to secure capacity on a scalable, OpEx basis to accommodate future demand.

The 60 per cent increase in end-user uptake is of course good news for existing data centre operators and highlights the positive outlook for those data centres such as the Nottingham Portal recently added to GVA Connect’s client list.

An existing 1.6 MVA data centre site with a number of revenue generating customers, ‘Nottingham Portal’ has significant potential for expansion – all of which is fully consented. Commenting on the Nottingham Portal, Carden said, “just one mile from Nottingham city centre, the site is centrally located in the UK and, having been originally developed by British Rail in the 1980s for its own IT needs, is alongside what was the British Rail National Fibre Network and as a result is extremely well connected.”
Carden concluded, “Cloud service providers, technology and media-related requirements continue to dominate the market and we predict further success with both acquisitions and disposals on behalf of clients and a high activity year for GVA Connect as the leading data centre property agency.”

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Photos
Photo of Charles Carden, Director of GVA Connect available at: http://turt.co/dcme49p1 [user: pics | pwd: pics] Caption: “Charles Carden, Director of GVA Connect”

Photo of Nottingham Portal Data Centre available at: http://turt.co/dmce49p2 [user: pics | pwd: pics] Caption: “Nottingham Portal Data Centre – currently for sale”

Contacts for further Editorial information
Charles Carden GVA
E: Charles.Carden@gva.co.uk
T: +44 20 7911 2529
and
Phil Turtle DataCenterIndustryPR
E: phil.turtle@turtleconsulting.com
T: +44 7867 780 676

Data Centre Deconstruction to Help Fund Junior Football

BRX0669 playing for succesBRX0669 Euroborg niceBrand-Rex has once again demonstrated that being environmentally responsible not only promotes sustainability, but also leads to lower costs and protects the company’s bottom line.

In collaboration with Essent, the leading power utility in the Netherlands, Brand-Rex were able to help them recover and recycle 91 per cent of all the materials from two end of life data centres they were retiring. This added up to a total of 8,385kg of cables, cords, servers, racks, wall ducts and other materials. Not only did this cover all of the costs of deconstruction and recovery but it produced a significant surplus of revenue from the recycled materials.

Having produced a surplus from their co-operation on this project the two companies decided to donate the revenue to another sustainable initiative. It was determined that “Playing for Success”, an after-school programme for 9 to 14 year olds who are not achieving their potential at school, an initiative local to Essent would be the appropriate choice

On non-match days in the Euroborg Sport Stadium children are encouraged through football to engage their interest where conventional teaching methods have failed.

To make the whole initiative ‘sustainable’ Essent and project partners have installed 500 solar panels on the roof of the stadium and Essent with Brand-Rex are donating the full revenue from five of these panels for the next 25 years.

Jeroen Loonstra, Regional Sales Director of Brand-Rex, said “It is very rewarding for Brand-Rex to be in a position to contribute to such a worthy cause that also creates a tangible value for both the company and our partner. With this initiative, which it is hoped will help thousands of young people over the next 25 years gain better access to education, Brand-Rex has demonstrated once again that it’s more profitable to be green”.

ABOUT BRAND-REX
Brand-Rex is a global operation, designing, developing and manufacturing the most sophisticated, high performance copper and fibre cabling systems for communications and extreme environment applications. Headquartered in Scotland, the company is committed to being a trusted market leading provider of best-in-class communications infrastructure solutions. As well as developing products and systems of the highest quality, the company is entirely carbon neutral and offsets all the CO2 created by the manufacture and distribution of its products. For more information visit www.brand-rex.com

Photos Available Here: http://turt.co/0669uroborg http://turt.co/0669playingforsuccess
[username: pics | password: pics] Caption: Marco Spoel (Essent, left) and Jan-Willem Hendriks (Brand Rex, right) symbolically make the donation to Dion Folkersma of Playing for Success Groningen (middle)

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High Levels of Connectivity Announced For London Gateway Data Centre

Unknown to the majority of the data centre community, London’s new Gateway Data Centre in London’s West Thurrock sits on top of a massive level of Internet connectivity.

The Thurrock area is thought by many in the industry to be provided only by four carriers: BT, KPN, Cable & Wireless (now Vodafone) and Colt Telecom. However, the new 50MVA Gateway data centre sits a mere 20 metres from Fujitsu’s Data Centre and their 6,000 km UK national fibre backbone.

The network gives direct connectivity through a diverse routed ‘figure of 8’ diverse network through Birmingham and Leicester to Manchester, Southport and Leeds. This ensures that direct low-latency access can be immediately available (subject to contracts) to some 400 Tier-1 and Tier-2 Carriers via London’s Telecity (Harbour Exchange), Telecity (London East) plus Global Switch (London East). The network also gives direct access to peering exchanges LINX and LoNAP plus easy connection to AMSIX and NLix. High levels of network security are also available with all Fujitsu routes being classified for either IL3 or IL2 and suitable for a variety of financial, government and military uses.

Announcing the connectivity research Charles Carden, a director of GVA Connect (the data centre specialist division of property agents GVA), said: “Not only are the connectivity options for the new Gateway data centre superb, we believe from our research that a number of further carriers are considering fibre digs into the area, which is earmarked to become the London East data centre hub, over the coming years. ”Diverse dark fibre routes are possible to The City of London, London’s financial centre, and estimated to have round-trip latency of just 0.19 to 0.2 milliseconds. The availability of BT, Colt, KPN and Cable & Wireless plus Fujitsu’s IL-3 and IL-2 secure IP transit network gives access to some 400 possible carriers and High Density Computing capabilities (thanks to the 50MVA power potential) mean that The Gateway Data Centre is now demonstrated to be one of the most capable sites currently available.”

The Gateway facility is located close to the M25 London Orbital motorway and with easy physical and electronic access to the UK’s financial centres in The City and London Docklands.”

Gateway Data Centre consists of a 2.3 hectare site designed to have 8,000 square metres (86,000 sq. ft.) of white space with a gross internal floor area of 19,500 square metres (210,000 sq. ft.). With up to 50MVA of power potentially available, the Gateway Data Centre is ideal for high density as well as normal density computing uses and is only a few kilometres away from the New York Stock Exchange’s disaster recovery and European Hub data centre in Basildon.

The new Gateway Data Centre already has all necessary planning permissions and is a secure site within an existing trading estate. It can be rapidly delivered as either: ‘Shell and Core’, ‘Powered Shell’, or it can be ‘Fully Fitted’ to customer requirements.
Full plans are available for the conversion of the existing building and these can be viewed by contacting Charles Carden at GVA Connect’s London Stratton Street office. Or visit www.gatewaydatacentre.co.uk

Photos

CGI illustration available at: http://turt.co/dcme31p [user: pics | pwd: pics] Contacts for further Editorial information
Charles Carden GVA
E: Charles.Carden@gva.co.uk
T: +44 20 7911 2529
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Phil Turtle DataCenterIndustryPR
E: phil.turtle@turtleconsulting.com
T: +44 7867 780 676

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As 200th Installation Announced, Direct-Air Evaporative Cooling Becomes Mainstream

EcoCooling, the leaders in direct-air evaporative cooling today revealed they have completed their 200th data centre cooling installation using the energy saving technology.

 

“Using CRECs (computer room evaporative coolers) instead of the conventional CRAC units (computer room air conditioning units) can save over 90 per cent of the energy needed to cool a data centre,” said EcoCooling managing and technical director Alan Beresford, “we are very pleased to announce Serve The World as the 200th data centre to adopt this solution at its 600kW Oslo facility in Norway.”

 

Data centre engineers are by nature very cautious and it has taken a number of years for the CREC cooling to be accepted as a safe and reliable alternative to expensive refrigeration-based CRAC cooling. Serve The World now joins a list of highly respected data centre operators able to operate with PUEs (power utilisation effectiveness) of 1.2 or less regardless of the level of occupancy in the data centre.

 

Other data centres which have grasped the power and cost saving EcoCooling CREC cooling technology include Insurance company Unum, UK telecoms companies BT and TalkTalk, public sector organisations Humberside police and Warwickshire County Council plus colocation specialist Capgemini, as well as Cambridge University and RNLI (the Royal Naval Lifeboat Institute)

 

Within the 200 installations there are data centres with power consumptions from 10kW to 1MW. For a 1MW installation the EcoCooling CREC solution would require only around 40kW of power compared to as much as 1000kW with conventional CRAC cooling. This saves the cost and infrastructure for 960 kW of power.

 

Aberdeen University Data Centre – cooled by EcoCooling CRECs has been awarded Data Centre Project of the Year in the BCS & Computing UK IT Industry Awards – covering the UK’s entire IT industry. Aberdeen beat off competition from Tesco, Capital One and the NHS.  A number of best practices including the deployment of EcoCooling CRECs has led to a PUE of less than 1.1.

 

EcoCooling’s direct-air cooled data centre projects are spread far and wide beyond the UK with installations also in New Zealand., Germany, Ireland and the latest Norway-based Serve the World.

 

Explaining how the CREC technology works, Beresford said, “in temperate climates there are up to 365 days every year when so-called ‘free cooling’ can be employed. On a fair proportion of these days it is simply enough to pass air from outside through the data centre servers and other active equipment at a suitable rate and no cooling of that external air is needed at all. On the remaining days, it is sufficient to use a very simple technique of water evaporation which takes heat out of the incoming air and cools it sufficiently to cool an entire data centre.”

 

“Concerns of data centre engineers about the use of fresh air in data centres have not materialised.  With over five years operational experience and research data now available from these 200 installations the EcoCooling CREC design principles and process controls have proven to provide a resilient and efficient cooling system. I think the list of major players that have fully researched the topic and have then implemented EcoCooling technology demonstrates that data centre engineers can now consider this power saving technology as being fully ‘of age’,” Beresford concluded.

 

New Cooling Solution Brings Major Savings To Telecoms And Server Rooms

For several years now Data Centres have been cutting the cost of cooling by 80 to 90 per cent thanks to direct-air evaporative cooling.

 

Market leader EcoCooling has now developed a smaller unit ideal for the telecoms room and small server rooms which have historically been some of the most expensive locations to cool due to the highly inefficient and often unsuitable refrigeration cooling units deployed.

 

Launching the new 15kW evaporative cooler, EcoCooling’s managing and technical director Alan Beresford explained, ‘small office-type air conditioners have been used to cool areas such as telecom rooms and small server rooms, but these are not really suited to cooling IT equipment and can be very inefficient. Refrigeration coolers naturally use a lot of energy and in-fact office type coolers simply aren’t designed to deal with the high levels of concentrated heat produced by modern servers, routers and switches.’

 

Often, to remove 15kW of heat from a server room the energy requirement to run the refrigeration coolers would amount to a further 15kW of electricity.

 

The new EcoCooling evaporative cooler requires a mere 400watts to remove 15kW of heat.  This can save over £10,000 per year in cooling costs.

 

With one leading University already looking to deploy 60 of these units – and save over 500kW of power the new product is set to be extremely popular!

Also, while refrigeration-based coolers whose efficiency gets far worse when they are partially-loaded, the new EcoCooling units are highly efficient at low loads.  5kW of cooling will require less than 50W of electricity.

 

The new 15kW cooler from EcoCooling requires no external condenser unlike conventional air conditioning units and is a self-contained compact unit at just 1.4m x 0.9m x 1.9m.  The units are also designed for ease and speed of maintenance and all maintenance is carried out inside the building.

 

The very simple installation method means the 15kW EcoCooling unit is significantly less expensive than conventional external units making the massive energy savings available to small server and telecoms rooms.

UK Data Centre On The Market – Ideal For Overseas Entrant to UK

GVA Connect, the data centre specialist division of property agents GVA, has taken new instructions to market an existing 1.6 MVA data centre ‘Nottingham Portal’ with the potential for expansion to 18 MVA and 70,000 square feet of space – all of which is fully consented.

Announcing the availability, GVA Connect director Charles Carden said, “Nottingham Portal data centre is just one mile from Nottingham city centre and nine miles from J24 of the M1 motorway. The site is centrally located in the UK and, having been originally developed by British Rail in the 1980s for its own IT needs, is alongside what was the British Rail National Fibre Network and as a result is extremely well connected.”

Phase 1 of the data centre is partly operational with customers occupying around 3,000 sq. ft. and producing an existing income stream.
Three further data halls have already been created meaning that some 8,775 sq. ft. of additional technical space can be delivered with 1.6 MVA of reserved power via the site’s dedicated 2MVA, 11 kV transformer.
Expansion

Planning consent exists to allow the existing facility to be extended to some 70,000 sq. ft. of gross space with Phase 1 having been altered to facilitate this work to go ahead with ease. Phase 2 of Nottingham Portal data centre has been designed as a high density Tier 3 facility providing an additional 35,000 sq. ft. of technical space and allowing power and cooling in N+1, N+N or 2N configurations to suit customer requirements.
Dual 18 MVA diverse power feeds have already been surveyed and would be available within 18 months. Additional land can also be made available adjacent to the data centre site if required. Said GVA Connect’s Carden, ”this site is ideally placed for an out-of-London UK data centre with readily available power, connectivity and land. It’s in a low risk area of a major city in the midlands of England.

 

With existing customers and an existing income stream it would make an ideal low risk, low-cost expansion option for either an existing UK data centre operator or an overseas entrant to the UK market.” Full details are available for the existing data centre and consented plans the expansion. These can be viewed by contacting Charles Carden at GVA Connect’s London Stratton Street office. Or visit http://turt.co/dcme42

-Ends-

Photo:   CGI illustration of the Nottingham Portal data centre is available at: http://turt.co/dcme42p   [user: pics | pwd: pics]

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Research shows Data Centre Space Take-Up Jumps 18 Per Cent

 

Gateway Data Centre Exterior

Gateway Data Centre Exterior

Research just released by GVA Connect, the data centre specialist division of property agents GVA, showed UK take-up of data centre space amounted to 830,000 square feet (gross retail area) in calendar year 2013.

 

“This represented an 18 per cent jump in data centre space take-up over the previous year,” said GVA Connect director Charles Carden, adding that the company expected take-up to remain at this level during 2014.

 

Confirming London’s position as a leading international data centre hub, Carden revealed that over three quarters of the 2013 data centre take-up was within the so-called London Synchronous Locations (locations which deliver round-trip latency of under three milliseconds).  The second most popular location was Manchester with the remainder of take-up spread across the UK.

 

Said Carden, ‘Not only does this research indicate a very healthy increase in data centre activity, the average power requirement – at over 500kw – demonstrates that the majority of these new projects are of a very significant size.

 

GVA Connect sees these figures as a very sound indicator of continued occupier confidence declaring that this follows-on from the steep rise in both the number and size of enquiries they reported in Q4/13.

 

“We continue to see an increase in serious enquiries from US operators for space in both UK and right across EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa),” said Carden.

 

Availability

Availability of data centre space in the London Zone is illustrated by new data centre space such as Gateway in London’s West Thurrock (gatewaydatacentre.co.uk).  This has the ability to deliver up to 86,000 square feet of data halls, 50MVA of diverse power, excellent connectivity and 2.0ms round trip latency to the City of London. Similar opportunities currently exist at both London’s Bracknell and Perivale data centres (bracknellandperivaledc.com) which, like Gateway are available as Shell and Core, Powered Shell or can be delivered as Fully Fitted data centres to specific customer requirements.

 

Also currently available are self-contained opportunities within existing established London region data centres such as 30,000 to 50,000 sqft of space at Heathrow in West London with 41MVA of power and 50,000 sqft at Croydon in South London with dual 10MVA potential. (gvaconnect.com/heathrow   gvaconnect.com/croydon ).

 

In the regions too there are data centre opportunities such as the Portal Data Centre in Nottingham with excellent connectivity, existing clients on lease plus planning consents to expand to 70,000 sqft of gross space with power expandable to over 10MVA via diverse feeds.

 

Rising trend

GVA Connect also reports a further rising trend in interest for data centre space from corporate users, cloud service providers and media-related businesses – indicating a relaxation in IT budgets as we move into 2014.

 

Carden added, “We anticipate enquiry and activity levels remaining steady at this higher level throughout 2014 with transactional activity driven by USA operators in Q3/14 and Q4/14. With GVA Connect being  the leading data centre property agency we are ideally placed to assist with both lettings and acquisitions during what promises to be a high-activity year.”

 

 

Raritan Solves The Intelligent PDU Retrofit Problem Without Downtime

Raritan, leader in high accuracy intelligent power monitoring and metering has designed a completely new retrofit power monitoring system suitable for both new and existing data centres. The technology is designed for ‘live’ installation, without any need for downtime or business interruption.

 

Operators of legacy data centres often look enviously at more modern facilities with intelligent power distribution units (PDUs) and their metering and monitoring reports. Without these modern systems, data centre  operators cannot easily tell how much additional equipment they can safely put in a rack – or how dangerously close they are to tripping a circuit breaker. (If a circuit breaker trips a whole rack or even row could lose power – with disastrous results for services and customers).

 

The problem in most legacy data centres has been that retrofitting in-line PDU’s involves downtime, which is normally unacceptable. Until now, that is.

 

Launching the new product, Raritan’s Richard May said, “Raritan’s new BCM (Branch Circuit Monitoring) needs no downtime for installation. It uses high accuracy split-core clamps that simply attach around existing supply cables.  The data from these clamps is combined with voltage monitoring information.  The non-invasive BCM installation then supplies the business with invaluable data including, power (kW), apparent power (kVA), energy (kWh) plus power factor (PF) as well as load balance on three-phase systems.”

 

Each Raritan BCM unit can monitor the incoming single phase or three phase feeds to a distribution panel plus up to 21 tributary or branch circuits to the rack’s A&B feed PDUs.

 

Multiple BCM units are connected together for larger panels and network connections are made using Wi-Fi or RJ45. Utilising industry standard SNMP protocols, the unit cleanly integrates into existing management and data collection systems.

 

Information is Power

Raritan BCM integrates direct to the Raritan Power IQ and dcTrack management software systems in exactly the same way as intelligent PDUs in new data centres.

 

This means that by the non-intrusive installation of Raritan BCM and either Power IQ or dcTrack software, legacy data centres can now easily have the full functionality enjoyed by newer facilities:

–       An increase in available power by ensuring that branch circuits are suitably loaded but never overloaded.

–       Avoiding pockets of ‘stranded’ (and hence un-used) power, maximising your data centre investment.

–       A complete, accurate view of branch circuit loading

–       Improved balance of loads

–       Monitoring and ensuring that breaker-trips are avoided except in true emergencies.

–       Accurately bill customers/users or user departments for energy usage.

–       Accurately measure PUE

–       Support energy saving and ‘green’ initiatives.

For more information visit  www.raritan.eu/bcm or contact Raritan at sales.uk@raritan.com or +44 207 090 139

 

Data Centre Alliance Elects Industry Senior Names to Board of Governors

Steven Norris, President of Data Centre Alliance

Steven Norris, President of Data Centre Alliance

Data Centre Alliance – the global not-for-profit industry representative body has elected six of the industry’s most powerful and respected chiefs to its Board of Governors.

 

Announcing the new appointments Date Centre Alliance (DCA) President Steven Norris (himself a former UK member of Parliament who held the position of Parliamentary Private Secretary in the Departments of Trade & Industry, Environment and Home Office) said, “In just two years the Data Centre Alliance has grown from being the brainchild of Simon Campbell-Whyte and Steve Hone to the highly respected industry representative body it now is.

 

“As such it is fitting that some of the most senior people in the industry should decide to give freely of their time and expertise to grow the DCA’s scope and influence wider and indeed globally. DCA has achieved several major milestones this year including the first ever government research funding – by the European Union – for project PEDCA. DCA has also launched the somewhat secret world of data centres, and their importance to society, to the public and businesses with two major special reports in conjunction with The New Statesman, a major international political and business publication.

 

Those taking up posts on the DCA Board of Governors are:

Adriaan Oosthoek –   DCA Chairman

Adriaan is Colt’s European Executive Vice President of Data Centre Services. He has worked in the data centre industry for 12 years and brings to the DCA a deep understanding of the colocation and wholesale data centre markets. He was also formerly UK Managing Director of Telecity Group.

 

Professor Dennis Kehoe – DCA Vice Chairman

Dennis is CEO of AIMES Grid Services and previously was Saxby Professor and Royal Academy of Engineering Research Professor at the University of Liverpool. He is also a non-executive director with a number of technology start-up and spin-out businesses.

Dennis continues a second term as Vice Chairman where his experience and expertise in major government funded R&D projects is invaluable. Future R&D funding for the industry, will remain a key focus for Dennis within the DCA.

 

Andrew Jay – DCA Senior Vice President for Governments and Policy

Andrew is Executive Director with international property and real-estate advisors CBRE where he runs the world’s largest data centre real-estate advisory team and publishes regular industry research reports.

Andrew will lead a drive against Governments’ mis-aligned policies and financial incentives.

 

Matt Pumfrey – DCA Senior Vice President for the DCA Technical Council

Matt is CEO of Smart Carbon Control and a director of Get-Smarter Energy.  Formerly also with Serco, he has over 15 years experience in the telecoms and technology sector.

Matt takes board responsibility for the DCA’s technical council and committees. His role will be to oversee the work of these groups and to establish further technical groups in line with the ever changing needs of the industry.

 

Rob Coupland – Senior Vice President for Training and Skills

Rob, is managing director at TelecityGroup and formerly with both NTL and Cable & Wireless. He brings 15 years plus years of experience to his new position on the DCA Board of Governors.

In his new role, Rob will build on his involvement with the recent DCA Graduate Bootcamp to establish firm links into schools, universities and commercial training organisations – to ensure that the data centre industry can avoid the currently forecast skills shortage.  Coupland’s appointment complements TelecityGroup’s corporate initiatives to facilitate apprenticeships in the technology sector throughout Europe.

 

Andrew Green – DCA Senior Vice President for New Markets

Basing himself between London and Hong Kong;  Andrew is a director at PTS Consulting. He joins the Board to spearhead the DCA’s expansion as representative body around the world.

He joins with pan-European DCA establishment well underway thanks to project PEDCA. He will focus on the need to establish DCA Chapters in the world’s major data centre locations to ensure that the DCA is fully representative of the industry for it’s members throughout the globe.

 

Ciaran Flanagan – Vice President

Ciaran is head of EMEA data centre initiatives for technology giant ABB and was previously head of data centre strategy with Nokia as well as roles with Intel and Verari Systems.

Ciaran joins the Board of Governors to make his supply-side experience available in a consultative capacity.

 

Nominations Invited

Three further Senior Vice Presidents (SVP) posts on the DCA Board of Governors have been announced and nominations are invited from experienced senior individuals prepared to give their time and expertise for the good of the industry.  They are:

  • SVP for Standards and Certification
  • SVP for Legal Affairs
  • SVP for Investment and Funding
  • SVP for Germany

Nominations can be submitted via this link http://turt.co/dca31

UK Government Breathes Life Back Into UK’s Essential Data Centre Industry

Steven Norris, President of Data Centre Alliance

The UK Government has finally recognised the economic importance of the Data Centre sector – one of the few industries where UK plc has a world lead – by their inclusion for the first time ever in a Government announcement.

(Data centres are the giant computing factories that drive industry, commerce, the cloud and social media.)

 

Said Data Centre Alliance President and former Minister of Transport Steven Norris, “The Chancellor of the Exchequer finally recognised Data Centres in his Autumn Statement as the major industry and economic wealth creator that they are, by removing the punitive tax regime that had been making the UK non-competitive in this business and forcing companies to off-shore their data centres.

 

“Britain is a world leader in the Data Centre industry and the Climate Change Levy had been wrongly applied to it because the Government, and indeed the public, were totally unaware of its existence! Something we at industry body the Data Centre Alliance (DCA) have been working hard this year to change. The Chancellor’s Autumn statement plus the winning of the first ever European Strategic Research funding for Data Centres now demonstrates that DCA has succeeded in bringing this previously unseen industry onto the Political agenda.”

 

Norris went on to explain that the Data Centres are buildings full of computer servers that power things like Facebook, Twitter, E-mail, the Banks all big businesses. Airline booking systems, Air Traffic Control, the NHS, city traffic lights and in fact just about every part of our lives are controlled by these massive data centres.

 

“The UK was one of the very first countries to develop Data Centres out of our world-class telecommunications and mainframe computing industries,” Norris said, “and we were in serious risk of loosing what are effectively the UK’s only remaining ‘factories’.”

 

We refer to them as ‘factories’ because they store and make information out of raw data. They are massive – often the size of five or six football pitches – and can consume as much electricity as a small city. “What the Government is now starting to understand is that it is essential to protect and grow one of the few industries where UK plc still has a world lead,” said Norris, “and we are delighted that DCA’s efforts in representing the industry to them have, in such a short period of time had such significant results.”

 

As recently as June 2013 when the DCA in conjunction with the UK’s foremost political magazine New Statesman produced the UK’s first mainstream expose of the hitherto ‘hidden world’ of data centres, no Government Minister could be found to write a contribution, because they were unaware of this massive sector.

 

The publication of that Special Report and a personal briefing by DCA to Greg Baker Minister of State at the Department of Energy and Climate Change brought about an instant interest. So much so that by the time of the second DCA/New Statesman Data Centre Special Report in August 2013 Minister of State for Universities and Science David Willets wrote a leader article recognising the importance of the sector and noted that Government Ministers Vince Cable, Michael Fallon and Ed Vaisey had all now been to visit Data Centres!

In the New Statesman/DCA special report, Willets wrote:

“Data centres are a crucial part of that infrastructure, and are an area that the government needs to understand better. They are the physical, tangible manifestation of the somewhat invisible and ethereal concept which is the internet. They are absolutely fundamental to a successful and vibrant information economy in the UK, supporting some of our biggest global companies, and our research institutions. London’s successful financial sector could not function without the state-of-the-art data centres in areas like Docklands, enabling computer-based and low-latency trading.

Data centres are the tangible manifestation of the ethereal internet

Moreover, in the UK we are good at putting together data centres – and this is expertise we can export to the world at a time when global spending on data centres is predicted to reach $149bn next year.

Concluded the DCA’s Executive Director Simon Campbell-Whyte, , “We are delighted that the UK Government has now recognised the imperative to grow and support this sector. And, although as an organisation we represent the industry globally we believe that this is a major milestone in the success of UK plc and are proud that we were able to achieve this on behalf of our members.”

 

“It is of course only a first step, and we are standing by to assist UK Government and Governments worldwide as they come to terms with understanding and supporting the digital factories that now power the global information economy.”

New 12MVA Substation Arrives at London Perivale Data Centre

London Perivale Data Centre Substation

London Perivale Data Centre Substation

New 12MVA Substation Arrives at London Perivale Data Centre

Work is now well underway on the building of a new 12MVA substation at London’s Perivale Data Centre. The substation is fed from the national grid by two dual resilient 11kV feeds, either of which will be capable of supplying the full 12MVA load.

Perivale One is the first data centre to have gained planning permission – and now power – on the 20 acre site in West London, owned by Hermes Real Estate Investment Management Limited (HREIML). HREIML intend for the Perivale Park site to become a major data centre in this strategic, well powered and highly connected location.

Jane Rampin of Bracknell and Perivale Data Centres said: “Assembling the essential infrastructure elements for a data centre is costly and time consuming. Securing 12MVA of power and facilitating its delivery to site has been a critical step in bringing Perivale Data Centre to fruition. This success demonstrates HREIML’s commitment to the scheme and our ability to deliver.”

HREIML is working in partnership with GCE Data Centres to deliver phase one, a purpose built two storey data centre at Perivale Park. This phase, which already has full planning consent, is offered for lease as a 30,000 sq ft powered shell, translating to some 15,000 sq ft of net technical space. With the new substation build running to plan, it is expected that the site will be energised next month.

David Willcocks, Director, Jones Lang LaSalle commented, “Opting for a powered shell data centre solution can shorten a clients’ build time by two years. HREIML and GCE have already done all the time consuming and expensive works to identify a site with plenty of power and fibre connectivity, drawn up plans and obtained full planning consent. The picture is complete with 12MW of power, secured and delivered.”

A data centre needs connectivity as well as power and HREIML, in conjunction with GCE, has at least ten high profile carriers poised to bring fibre into the Perivale Data Centre. These include BT, Colt Telecom, CWW, EasyNet, Geo Networks, Global Crossing, Redstone, SSE (Neos), Verizon Business and Virgin Media.

Low latencies are important to a successful data centre and the sites strategic location, between the City and Slough and inside the M25 ensures that they remain low.

The partnership also brought forward another powered shell data centre scheme at Bracknell, in the heart of the Thames Valley region, one of the UK’s primary tech hubs. A 78,000 sq ft powered shell scheme, Bracknell Data Centre is now available with high levels of connectivity, planning consent and 10MWA of power and is also about to be energised.

Jones Lang LaSalle and GVA Connect are joint lettings agents on the scheme

Brand-Rex Appoints Andy Sharkey As Sales Director

BRX0617_Andy Sharkey_SalesDirector_Brand-RexLeading data networking solutions provider Brand-Rex has appointed Andy Sharkey as its new sales director, based at the company’s headquarters in Glenrothes, Scotland.

Andy is a highly qualified professional with over 22 years experience in the IT industry, most recently holding the position of regional business director at Panduit.

Commenting on his new position, Andy said “I am excited to join Brand-Rex and look forward to combining my industry knowledge and experience to lead the sales organisation as we move the  business forward.”

At Brand-Rex Andy will be responsible for all aspects of sales strategy development and deployment. His appointment will further strengthen the senior management team ensuring ongoing support for the company’s channel and system integrator partners.  Andy’s wide ranging experience across international markets will be instrumental in realising the company’s plans to extend its territorial footprint.

Commenting on the appointment, Martin Hanchard, CEO, Brand-Rex, said, “We are delighted to welcome Andy to the Brand-Rex management team and look forward to his strategic contribution to the Board. His extensive experience and sales leadership credentials will help ensure we achieve our long term growth aspirations.

DiskShred warns of rising PCI-DSS data destruction issues for UK corporates

“Under the PCI DSS rules, if you do not comply with the required standard, you may lose you ability to accept credit and debit cards from your customers – which is arguably far worse than a hefty fine from the ICO” — Philip McMichael, Operations Director, DiskShred

 

Disk Shredded Data Fully Destroyed

Disk Shredded Data Fully Destroyed

Leading data storage destruction specialist DiskShred (www.diskshred.eu)  has warned UK companies that process credit card transactions – which accounts for almost all SMEs and larger businesses – of plans to dramatically ramp up the security requirements under Version 3 of the PCI DSS rules due later this year.

 

Developed by the card payments industry in close consultation with the Payment Card Industry (PCI) council, the PCI Data Security Standards (PCI DSS) consists of 12 significant requirements including multiple sub-requirements, which contain numerous directives.

 

These directives – which apply to most organisations that process payment card transactions – allow businesses to measure their own payment card security policies, procedures and guidelines.

 

Most experts agree that revision 3 of the PCI DSS rules will see the scope of the rule’s external audit requirements extended to cover many more companies, as well as impose harsher requirements on all companies who accept credit and debit cards from their customers.

 

According to Philip McMichael, Operations Director with DiskShred, this will impose a far more stringent set of security requirements when companies dispose of their data, especially where the IT equipment has reached an end-of-life situation.

 

“We’ve all heard the horror stories of customer data appearing on the hard drives of computers sold on auction Web sites – resulting in fines from the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) under the Data Protection Act. Under the PCI DSS rules, if you do not comply with the required standard, you may lose you ability to accept credit and debit cards from your customers – which is arguably far worse than a hefty fine from the ICO,” he said.

 

“Thankfully we can offer an on-site service that provides a hard drive and data storage device destruction facility that conforms to all necessary governance standards – shredding the data storage down to confetti-sized pieces – and providing a complete compliance audit trail, thanks to on-truck CCTV facilities and staff who are CRB checked on their backgrounds,” he added.

 

McMichael, whose firm has been in the IT asset disposal business since 2001, went on to say that DiskShred has the necessary EU accreditations to do what it does – and a few more besides – which is why almost three quarters of its business comes from repeat or client referrals.

 

And with other legislation – including the aforementioned Data Protection Act – and the Companies Act, imposing increasing levels of data security duty of care on company directors and their senior staff – there is also the spectre of the Government introducing custodial sentences for individuals who breach data protection laws to contend with.

 

And this, says DiskShred’s Operations Director, is where his firm’s fully auditable on-site data storage device destruction service can provide a hassle-free way of avoiding corporate angst over breaking the law or required governance standards. It’s also why on-site destruction is essential, “A company needs to be sure its hard drives definitely made it into the shredder without any ‘en-route diversions’ into the wrong hands”, McMichael said.

 

“Our observations suggest that no matter how effective the data security and destruction rules within an organisation, the human element will always mean that rules can be deviated from – and corners will be cut. People get tired, become bored and even turn to crime depending on the circumstances,” he said.

 

“This is why we believe that on-site media shredding – to verifiable minimum standards, backed up with criminal background checks on the staff completing the process and CCTV footage to act as the ultimate audit proof,” he added.

 

“Our approach is the only sure-fire way to prove to regulators, the Police and clients, that the data held on your storage devices is gone forever. So whether you have 50 or 5000 disks to destroy, we can move our trucks on to your site and shred your hardware in front of your eyes.”

Mayor of London congratulates Virtus Data Centres on commencement of works at LONDON2

Boris Johnson City HallLondon, 5 November 2013 – Virtus Data Centres Ltd, (Virtus), London’s flexible and efficient data centre specialists has announced its plan for expansion of its London data centre portfolio and the start of construction of its second site in West London, LONDON2.

Virtus’ new flagship data centre is designed to meet the growing demand for scalable, reliable, on-demand colocation services and will be the first in London to deploy a new ground breaking fresh-air, evaporative cooling technology that dramatically decreases energy consumption, bringing site power usage effectiveness (PUE) to below 1.2, delivering substantial savings to Virtus’ clients.

 

By using this evaporative cooling technology together with solar panels, ground water from its own well, chimney racks for heat extraction, highly efficient UPS systems, and other innovative technologies Virtus LONDON2 will be the most energy-efficient data centre in London. It will reduce its environmental impact even further by using 100% green power from renewable sources and heat pumps to recirculate heat generated by the IT equipment into communal areas.

 

Mayor of London Boris Johnson welcomed the new investment in Virtus LONDON2 and commented “I’m delighted that Virtus has chosen to invest in London again. London is leading the global digital technology revolution and is the world’s leading technology hub with great British technology, creativity and innovation.  Up and coming companies like Virtus are at the heart of that whole explosion of talent in London and I’m delighted to see them using so many state of the art ways of saving energy and improving efficiency.”

 

Steve Norris, Chairman of Virtus Data Centres, and himself a former Mayoral candidate added: “Virtus is one of London’s technology success stories, growing fast in the 3 years since we opened the door of our first site in Enfield.  That growth is  fuelled by the boom in technology, media and mobile activity in London. We wanted our LONDON2 facility to be right at the cutting edge of environmental efficiency and we’re proud of what we’ve started.  We’re also looking at other sites for LONDON3. Virtus’ on-going commitment to innovate in-line with the way businesses need data centre space ensures that our customers can rely on maximum flexibility, quality, service and value.”