HKEx plans $700m data centre

Source: Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing

Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEx) is set to start implementing a plan for a next generation data centre to meet its business expansion needs and its markets' long-term development needs.

HKEx has received approval from Hong Kong Science & Technology Parks Corporation to acquire an 11,000-square-metre site (which is equivalent to a site of about 118,000 square feet) in Hong Kong's Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate for the project. Under its preliminary plan, HKEx intends to construct a three-storey data centre and information technology (IT) office space with a total floor area of 143,000 square feet.

The data centre in Tseung Kwan O will consolidate the primary data centres for all HKEx's markets and clearing houses systems, as well as certain IT development and support staff. HKEx currently has primary data centres in two separate locations in Hong Kong and backup centres in three other locations in the city.

A self-built data centre best suits HKEx's long-term development needs as a high level of security can be maintained and HKEx will be able to install modern data centre facilities and technology to keep system up-time at the top level. In addition, Tseung Kwan O Industrial Estate provides an efficient and cost effective solution.

HKEx aims to take possession of the site in the first half of this year. The data centre for HKEx's securities market will be relocated approximately 26 months after site possession, so its relocation is expected to be completed around mid-2012. The data centres for HKEx's derivatives market and clearing houses will be relocated in the 12 months following relocation of the date centre for the securities market. The tentative target period for completion of the entire project is the middle of 2013.

The preliminary cost estimate, which covers land premium and costs for construction, facilities, office fittings, relocation and technology upgrades, is approximately $700 million over the next three years. However, the building and facility design and other details are not yet final so the cost estimate will be subject to change. HKEx will fund the project with its internal resources.

"Technology and data centre operations play a critical role at HKEx, ensuring the delivery of the secure, reliable and effective IT services needed to run the exchanges and clearing houses. They also support reliable trading and clearing infrastructure for all HKEx Participants and information vendors, as well as the investing public," HKEx Chief Executive Charles Li said.

"The data centre project shows our commitment to further strengthening our market infrastructure to support our markets' long-term development," he said.

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