Kao Data has announced the opening of Kao London One, the first of four data centres to be built at the Kao Data Campus in Harlow. When fully completed, the £200 million campus will support an IT load of over 35MW across 150,000 sq ft of technical space.

As a rare new entrant to the wholesale data centre market, Kao Data has attracted a lot of attention both for its size and level of investment. The campus represents one of the largest developments in the UK and adds substantial capacity and future organic growth opportunities for customers. Kao Data Campus is located in the London-Stansted-Cambridge technology corridor, just 20 miles North of the London Docklands and 30 minutes from Liverpool Street.

Jan Daan Luycks, CEO of Kao Data said, “The ever-expanding data economy continues to drive the need for IT capacity. Kao London One provides highly resilient capacity and connectivity for national and international businesses. We believe that our strategic location and premium campus solutions offers an exceptional proposition to customers across a wide range of sectors, providing them with significant competitive edge.”

The new data centre is opened with a fully operational Technology Suite, providing 2.2MW customer-ready technical space within an 8.8MW Powered Shell. Kao Data Campus offers the latest thinking in terms of design, energy-efficiency and sustainability, and flexible configuration to offer the some of the most advanced facilities available. Key to the Kao design philosophy is reduced complexity in mechanical and electrical system engineering.

Paul Finch, Chief Operating Officer at Kao Data stated, “I’m delighted that the first phase of the Kao Data Campus has been brought to market according to schedule, with all objectives met and, importantly, on budget. From the outset of the project we went back to basics, with an acute focus on reliability and availability. We have shown these attributes can be complementary to lower capital and operations expenditure, energy-efficiency and sustainability.

From a procurement perspective, Kao adopted a collaborative and shared risk approach to delivery, which in light of recent high-profile failures in the construction sector, has strongly positioned both us and our partners well for the future phases of the development. This is due in no small part to the experience of the management team and the decision to partner with an engineering-led main contractor, JCA Engineering, and key equipment suppliers.”

David Bloom, Chief Executive and Founder of Goldacre Ventures, said: “It is has become increasingly rare for new companies to launch into the wholesale data centre market. The barriers to entry are simply too high given the funding requirement and the lack of suitable sites with sufficient owned power, land and connectivity. Kao Data Campus represents an exciting and important resource for the UK data economy. Not only is it backed by some of the world’s most astute investors, it also benefits from an experienced and visionary management team.”

Tom Phillips, Investment Director at Downing, commented, “Since providing a debt facility to the business in February last year, which has been used to support the construction of the first data centre, we have been impressed with the performance of the Kao team. Completing the build programme to schedule and on budget is reflective of their ability to deliver on what they say they are going to do. We now look forward to the growth of the business and seeing a range of different customers choosing Kao Data as their data centre provider and partner of choice”.

With concurrently maintainable site infrastructure, Kao London One is designed to provide 100% uptime. Together with climate control infrastructure utilising Indirect Evaporative Cooling Units, the Kao Data Campus provides highly resilient and highly energy efficient operations, with a proven ultra-low PUE below 1.2.

John Keddie, Chairman of the Harlow Enterprise Zone said “We are delighted to see the completion of the first data centre at Kao Park. Not only does this mark a significant milestone in the development of the Enterprise Zone, but it marks the continuation in technological development here following on from the first development of fibre optic technology on the site 50 years ago. Harlow Council has been pleased to have been a partner in the data centre development, supporting the infrastructure delivery, and are excited about the prospect for further growth on the site”.