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.”