Thursday, June 20, 2024

Report: AWS to spend billions on new cloud data center infrastructure in Italy – SiliconANGLE

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Amazon.com Inc.’s cloud computing business is holding talks with the Italian government over a potential multibillion-dollar investment that will see it expand its data center operations in the country, in line with plans to boost its presence across Europe.

That’s according to a report by Reuters, which cites four people familiar with the talks as saying that Amazon Web Services Inc. is considering either expanding its existing data center in Milan or building a new one elsewhere in the country.

The company established itself in Italy in 2020, as part of a promised 2 billion-euro investment plan that’s slated to culminate in 2029. It counts some of Italy’s biggest enterprises as its customers, including the luxury car maker Ferrari S.p.A. and the insurance firm Assicurazioni Generali S.p.A.

Reports of the talks come at a time when AWS has been aggressively scaling up its European expansion plans. Recently, the company announced plans to invest 15.7 billion euros ($17.02 billion) in the Aragon region in northeast Spain, replacing an earlier plan to spend 2.5 billion euros on building data center infrastructure in that country.

Reuters did not reveal a concrete number regarding how much AWS is looking to invest in Italy, but although it will likely be in the billions, it’s unlikely to surpass the investment planned for Spain. No announcement is expected imminently.

Last year, AWS announced its intention to ramp up its investment in Europe as part of a plan to build servers that can cater to the data privacy requirements of European Union governments and customers in highly regulated industries. As part of that initiative, the company revealed it will invest 7.8 billion euros to build new data center facilities in Germany between now and 2040.

In addition, AWS is aiming to provide cloud services to Europe’s telecommunications industry. Earlier this month, it announced it had signed up Telefónica Germany GmbH & Co. OHG as a customer. The German telecoms giant said it will move more than 1 million customers to the AWS cloud in the coming years.

The news bodes well for a cloud computing industry that has had to deal with enterprises scaling back their information technology spending over the past two years, amid concerns over high interest rates and a slow economy. Fortunately for cloud providers, many big enterprises have begun increasing their spending again, with interest in artificial intelligence driving a new phase of growth in the $270 billion cloud infrastructure market.

Amazon’s rivals are also expanding in Europe. Google Cloud recently revealed a plan to invest 1 billion euros in Italy to create two cloud regions to support that country’s biggest bank, Intesa Sanpaolo S.p.A., which became a customer in 2020.

Meanwhile, Microsoft Corp. said last year it will open its first Azure cloud region in Italy, as part of a $1.5 billion investment plan that was unveiled in 2020.

Image: SiliconANGLE/Microsoft Designer

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