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GIC leads investor group developing North American data centres

GIC will lead a group of investors to form an investment vehicle to develop, acquire and operate data centres across North America, it announced on Wednesday.

It has partnered Denver-based private investment company Mount Elbert Capital Partners, and OPTrust - described as one of Canada's largest pension funds - to form EdgeCore Internet Real Estate.

The company will initially be capitalised with some US$800 million of equity supporting approximately US$2 billion in data centre development and investment.

EdgeCore Internet Real Estate's deployment of its North American data centre platform will include campus developments across six markets, GIC said.

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EdgeCore Internet Real Estate has already acquired land in Mesa, Arizona, and intends to close further agreements to purchase land in Dallas, Texas and Reno, Nevada before the end of the quarter and immediately begin construction on each site upon acquisition.

Each site is designed to deliver between 100 megawatts (MW) and 200 MW of critical power, the company said, and plans to complete the first building in late 2018.

In the second quarter of this year, the company intends to further acquire land in three tier-one markets, and is looking to commence construction on each campus within the year.

Lee Kok Sun, GIC Real Estate's chief investment officer said GIC was pleased to partner with Mount Elbert and OPTrust in this venture.

"As a long-term value investor, we believe the secular growth in data consumption and public cloud usage will generate attractive returns in the data center sector," he said.

Tom Ray, who in addition to being Mount Elbert's chief executive will also helm EdgeCore Internet Real Estate, said: "We are excited to execute upon our shared vision of creating a scalable North American data centre platform and we look forward to expanding with GIC and OPTrust as we work to grow EdgeCore Internet Real Estate beyond our initial roll out."

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