September 30, 2022

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AWS to invest $2.3B+ in UK data centers over the next two years

3 min read

Amazon Web Services Inc. on Wednesday announced that it will spend more than £ 1.8 billion, or about $ 2.37 billion, to build and operate data centers in the UK

The investment will be made over the next two years, AWS said. According to the company, the move will double the total value of the investments it has made in the UK since December 2016.

AWS and its rivals regularly expand their data center networks with new facilities to meet the steadily growing demand for cloud services. AWS ‘revenues increased 40%, to $ 17.78 billion, last quarter in the latest sign that cloud adoption continues to increase rapidly.

Building more data centers also has another benefit for cloud providers: it allows them to reduce latency for customers. Constructing a data center closer to enterprise customers’ facilities reduces the time information takes to travel back and forth, thereby speeding up applications. Lowering latency also makes it more practical for companies to implement certain cloud use cases, such as real-time data analytics.

In its announcement, AWS didn’t go into much detail about the technical aspects of its planned £ 1.8 billion data center investment. However, the Inc. unit did on the occasion share an update about a number of its other UK initiatives.

AWS parent Amazon is the world’s top corporate buyer of renewable energy. Last year, the company announced its largest renewable energy project in the UK to date: the Moray West wind farm off the coast of Scotland. AWS said today that the wind farm is expected to support more than 1,000 jobs during construction and, over time, add £ 500 million to Scotland’s economy.

AWS launched a training program called AWS re / Start in the UK five years ago that prepares participants for cloud computing careers. The cloud giant says that, since its launch, the program has been expanded to more than six cities throughout the UK AWS re / Start is available in a total of 95 cities worldwide.

Another AWS initiative, the AWS Digital Innovation Program, has also been expanded significantly since its launch. The initiative provides small and medium-sized businesses with access to resources such as best practices that they can use to inform their cloud adoption efforts. The AWS Digital Innovation Program has been made available in Oxford, Milton Keynes and Cambridge since its launch last year.

Overall, Amazon estimates that it has made direct investments totaling more £ 32 billion in the UK since 2010. This sum includes both capital expenditures and operating expenses. Amazon increased its UK workforce to more than 70,000 workers last year after creating 25,000 new roles.

Amazon Chief Financial Officer Brian Olsavsky told investors last month that 40% of the company’s capital expenditure is spent on infrastructure, with most of those funds going to AWS. Olsavsky added that “We see the capex for infrastructure going up” this year. AWS currently operates 26 cloud regions, each of which includes multiple data centers, has another 8 regions in the works and maintains more than 300 edge locations.

Image: AWS

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