An interview with Gary Keogh, Executive Committee member for Host in Ireland and the Sales Director, Digital Realty, Blanchardstown. Q: Why is Ireland a good place for hosting? Gary Keogh: It is important to look at why Apple did not opt to host in European mainland cities, and chose Denmark and Ireland instead. Ireland has a host of strong factors in its favour, including its clustered development. As the Internet of Things develops and there is good access to the cloud cluster, this will enable Ireland to be even more successful in attracting more global companies. Digital Realty Profile Park has been a great success, with a €½ million saving in air conditioning and cooling costs per data hall per annum. The indirect air cooling innovation has been extremely successful, enabling a supply temperature of 24 degrees Celsius rather than 22 to the data halls. An upside is that there is no humming of fans, which means it is a quiet and comfortable workspace. Q: Why are you a member of Host In Ireland? GK: Host In Ireland is a powerful initiative and membership conveys credibility. That said, Host In Ireland could be bigger. We need to elevate our profile to the same level as the hyperscale data centres, like Microsoft and Apple. We are collectively equal in size by power compared to these players, 140 MW each. We are part of Host in Ireland so that we amplify the fact that Ireland for hosting is not just for the hyperscale size companies. Q: What has worked well? GK: The alignment of all the benefits of being here in Ireland. It’s not just the data centre, it’s all the other factors, including access to affordable power, redundant network and bandwidth capacity so it’s been a relatively straightforward proposition once our prospects arrive in Ireland. Apple coming here is a great development. It helps US companies, when choosing when and where to locate their digital assets, because there is a history of important companies hosting here in Ireland. Q: Are you optimistic for the future? GK: Very much so. Ireland is now hosting most of the big cloud providers. AWS, Azure and Google are all here now, as well as many others. This is a big incentive for other companies to come here. They are building infrastructure for the next 10 to 15 years, which shows they understand the value of being here. Q: What are the challenges for Host in Ireland and Digital Realty in particular? GK: In the U.S., Digital Realty is widely known, but has a lower profile as an organisation in Dublin. A goal of ours is to raise awareness. We have an exceptional story to tell, conveying the message of great connectivity and the green power that will be coming to the market. I would like to see Host In Ireland achieve more visibility and penetration within the U.S. and in Asia. Q: What are the possible risks to continued Irish success? GK: I don’t see many in this arena- Ireland has renewables and an ambient temperature which fosters a green DC environment coupled with a brilliant track record of success for FDI. One challenge we face is that Ireland is still largely unknown in Asia. With the U.S., we have a linked history and a shared language. However, in Asia, with companies like Huawei, we need to build a relationship with them. Q: Anything else? GK: We’re fortunate in Ireland not to have a quantifiable risk or series of unknowns. Ireland offers less uncertainty than many other countries in terms of the political situation, the power supply, the workforce and the weather. We offer the complete package for the cloud, the storage and the end-products. We are the best small country to host data centres and our mission is to be branded for that quality.