Bharti Airtel To Invest INR 5,000 Cr; Forecasts $4 Bn Opportunity

Telecom major Bharti Airtel will invest Rs 5,000 crore over the next 3-4 years to triple its data center capacity in the country

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Bharti Airtel Limited on Thursday unveiled a refreshed brand identity ‘Nxtra by Airtel’ for its data centre business and outlined investment plans to significantly scale up its data centre network to serve the requirements of India’s fast-growing digital economy.

Airtel

Nxtra by Airtel aims to be at the forefront of this growth and plans to invest Rs 5,000 crores by 2025 to further scale up its industry-leading network of hyperscale and edge data centres. This will include new data centre parks in key metro cities. The investment will triple Nxtra by Airtel’s installed capacity to over 400 MW to meet the surging demand and consolidate its network leadership.       

Nxtra by Airtel has the largest network of data centres in India. It currently operates 10 large and 120 edge data centres located strategically across India and manages critical submarine landing stations. Coupled with Airtel’s global network, it offers secure and scalable integrated solution to global hyperscalers, large Indian enterprises, start-ups, SMEs and governments.

With 5G around the corner, a fast-growing digital economy, enterprises transitioning to cloud and local data storage regulations, India is witnessing strong demand for reliable data centre solutions.The Indian data centre industry is expected more than double its installed capacity from an approximate 450 MW to 1074 MW by 2023.

“Airtel has built the largest data centre network in India and we are now doubling down on this business to scale up our network that will be at the core of 5G and Digital India. Our experience of operating secure data centres, deep brand trust in the enterprise segment and the ability to deliver end-to-end digital transformation solutions positions us well to serve the emerging requirements of India’s connected economy. The new brand identity embodies this vision and ambition,” said Ajay Chitkara, director and chief executive officer, Airtel Business.

Sustainability will continue to be its big focus given the huge energy requirements of data centres. Nxtra by Airtel is already scaling up use of green energy for its data centres and aims to source 50 per cent of the power requirements of these centres through renewable sources as part of Airtel’s overall GHG emission reduction targets. Nxtra by Airtel also recently commissioned captive solar power plants in the state of Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra with still more in the pipeline, the platform shared.