A 20-MEGAWATT colocation data centre has been inaugurated at Amrahia in the Adentan Municipality in the Greater Accra Region.
Known as the Onix Data Centre Limited, the $48-million investment makes Ghana the host of the only tier-four data centre in West Africa.
It is connected to multiple undersea fibre cables, providing redundancies that can accommodate and satisfy all international community requirements.
Onix also designs, builds, manages and operates the world-class carrier neutral co-location data centre.
It is a facility with world-class infrastructure to host data storage servers of different organisations and companies, keeping them up and running non-stop (optimal uptimes) of up to 99.95 per cent uptime of the tier-four classification.
Owned by African Infrastructure Investment Managers (AIM), which is founded by two market giants, Makaraide from Australia and Old Mutual from South Africa, the centre is the only African carrier-neutral co-location data centre outside South Africa.
The Vice-President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, who inaugurated the centre at a ceremony at Amrahia, near Accra yesterday, said the tier-four accreditation was a major milestone in Onix’s strategy to create a world-class hub in Ghana to service the local, the greater West African and the international market.
The status, he explained, would satisfy the increasingly stringent requirements laid down by regulated entities such as banks, healthcare providers and certain arms of government which managed sensitive information.
He said that particular investment in Ghana by the South African giant was further proof of the important economic and diplomatic ties between the two countries.
Dr Bawumia said the establishment of the data centre fitted perfectly into the government’s passion and drive to ensure that “we have adequate data in the country on which our digitalisation agenda will thrive”.
The Onix facility, he added, would provide the launch pad for a wave of transformation at the organisational and business process level.
“There is perhaps now more important development revolution facing us now than the fast approaching digitalisation and leveraging technology to develop our country,” he said.
“It is, therefore, gratifying to see that Onix has responded positively to this call to set up this data centre,” he added.
Touching on the role of the investor, Vice-President Bawumia said AIM developed, created, advised and managed private equity funds in East, West and Southern Africa.
He said it understood the African business environment and had experience spanning a range of infrastructure asset pluses.
“We have already witnessed significant investments in Ghana by AIM across multiple energy projects, including power generation and midstream energy, and today we proudly include this digital infrastructure investment,” he pointed out.
He expressed the hope that the strategic investment would assist the government to realize its digitalization goals as it continued to build new systems to change the old ways of doing things.
“I am told that the initial investment and subsequent ones by AIM are and will be in excess of $48 million, which represents tangible proof that foreign investors continue to have faith in our digital transformation agenda,” Dr Bawumia stated.
“Again, I am reliably informed that in late 2021, Onix was certified as the only Africa-based carrier-neutral co-location data centre outside of South Africa to be awarded the coveted uptime institute tier-four accreditation. This, therefore, makes Ghana the only tier-four data centre in West Africa,” he explained.
The Vice-President urged local chief executives to adopt and implement world-class solutions and be hosted in-country, without having to invest in on-premise equipment and infrastructure, which were costly and not economically viable.
He said the government would design enabling policies for businesses such as those of AIM and Onix to invest and deliver sustainable results and applauded the vision shown by the AIM board and the Onix management team for bringing the project to fruition.
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Onix Data Centre, Michael Nahon, said job creation and skills development remained the company’s priority.
He said Onix would, therefore, focus on the youth and women to bridge the gender divide.
He said Ghana’s drive towards a digital future was supported by Onix and, therefore, the company was pleased to be part of Ghana’s future.
He extended his appreciation to industry players who, he said, had done a substantially good job to pave the path and ensure that Onix was successful.
Mr Nahon said Onix would drive new investment opportunities into the country to result in new employment, the up-scaling of expertise, as well as the transfer of skills.