With the backing of Macquarie Infrastructure Partners, Aligned sees an opportunity to work with hyperscale tenants in new ways, and innovate in data center sustainability and construction. Phill Lawson-Shanks, Chief Development Officer for Aligned. notes that Macquarie is one of the world’s largest investors in renewable energy
“They have a bunch of assets which use waste-to-energy, as well as carbon capture,” said Lawson-Shanks. “We’re looking at how we can associate one of these plants with a data center build-to-suit.”
The relationship between Aligned and Macquarie is just one example of how large global investors are bringing change to the data center industry. Recent investments by Macquarie and other infrastructure funds like Brookfield Infrastructure and Stonepeak Infrastructure Partners have the potential to speed the industrialization of the data center, streamlining the delivery of capacity to support the growth of cloud computing.
An Industry Reshaped by Hyperscale Growth
The rise of hyperscale computing has been driven by a group of marquee tech brands, including Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook and Apple. These companies’ demand for larger chunks of space has driven innovation in data center construction, prompting wider adoption of lean construction and pre-fabricated components to accelerate delivery schedules.
With its focus on “smart infrastructure,” Aligned believes it can address the needs of hyperscale customers. It also sees an opportunity in the growth of “platform companies” like Uber and Lyft that are using software and logistics to disrupt existing industries.
“We’re going after the hyperscale customers,” said Lawson-Shanks, who said Aligned’s new facilities are “designed as a data factory. That’s going to be essential as the hyperscalers and the large platform companies grow. They’re all mimicking the hyperscale companies and (the approaches) they have been using. They want to run their own infrastructure, but operate on the same structure of highly-dense compute, an intelligent network, and a lot of AI (artificial intelligence) to manage.”
Aligned Energy specializes in solving capacity management challenges through innovation in cooling and the supply chain. Last year’s investment by Macquarie brings new capabilities on that front.