Gulf Energy in Thai billionaire Sarath Ratanavadi’s data center partners with Singtel
Gulf Energy, controlled by billionaire Sarath Ratanavadi, announced on Friday that it has signed a memorandum of understanding with telecommunications giant Singtel to explore developing a data center business in Thailand and harnessing pandemic-induced demand for the digital infrastructure.
As part of the MOU, Gulf said Singtel and Singtel will form a partnership, 50% of which will be owned by each party. The partners are the largest shareholders of stakes in InTouch Holdings and its Advanced Info Service unit, Thailand’s largest mobile operator.
The news comes as the Covid-19 pandemic accelerates demand for data across the region, with consumers stuck at home turning to online shopping and food deliveries, while working remotely. “The company predicts rapid growth of digital infrastructure in Thailand as the economy is increasingly driven by innovation and technology, with increased demand for data management and storage from local businesses. as well as hyperscalers entering the Thai market, ”Gulf Energy said in a statement. the Thailand Stock Exchange.
Thailand, along with Indonesia and Singapore, are Southeast Asia’s largest data center markets, accounting for 70 percent of the regional market, Singtel said in a separate statement. The region’s data center capacity is set to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 18% from 2020 to 2025, the company said, citing estimates from Frost & Sullivan.
“With the rapid pace of digital growth, we are seeing strong demand for an integrated network of data centers in different markets,” Singtel Group CEO Yuen Kuan Moon said in a statement.
Singtel, Southeast Asia’s largest telecommunications company, said it is also in advanced talks with longtime partner Telkom to acquire and build data center assets in Indonesia. The Singapore-listed company has data center assets that generate more than S $ 250 million ($ 184 million) in revenue.
“We look forward to leveraging our local expertise in combination with Singtel’s strengths to build a strong data center business in Thailand and explore ways to add more value to the business through solution integration. green energy, ”Sarath, CEO of Gulf Energy, said in a statement. “This collaboration marks the start of a long-term partnership that will allow us to pursue more data center activities in Asia in the future. “
The partnership comes after Gulf failed to wrest majority control from InTouch earlier this year. In April, Gulf offered to buy the remainder of InTouch for 169 billion baht ($ 5 billion) but Singtel, the company’s largest shareholder with a 21% stake at the time, rejected the move. offer. By the closing of the offer in August, Gulf had more than doubled its stake in InTouch to 42%.
Eager for growth, Gulf diversifies the company’s portfolio by investing in green energy, toll roads and ports. Sarath, 56, is the majority shareholder of Gulf. With a net worth of $ 8.9 billion, he was ranked No.5 on Thailand’s 50 richest list released in July.
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