Microsoft yesterday revealed plans to spend €170 million (£140 million) to further expand its data centre in Dublin, Ireland - a city that is also home to several other large data centres including those owned by Google and Amazon.
The US tech giant said the expansion is necessary to meet demand for its cloud services from consumers and businesses in the EMEA region (Europe, Middle East and Africa).
Microsoft Ireland managing director, Cathriona Hallahan, said: "This expansion is evidence of the continued demand for Microsoft's cloud services such as Office 365, Bing, Skype, Xbox Live, and the Windows Azure platform across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. As the demand for these cloud-based services continues to grow we are investing to meet our customers' needs."
The expansion brings the total level of investment at the company's Dublin facility to 594 million (£491 million), added Hallahan at the firm's European Development Centre in Dublin today.
It also increases the data centre campus' computing capacity by 15,700 square metres (169,000 square feet) and brings the total footprint up to 54,255 square metres (584,000 square feet). Construction of the facility, which has already commenced and is due for completion next Spring, will create 380 building-related jobs and 20 new data centre jobs, according to Microsoft.
Welcoming the investment, Tnaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Eamon Gilmore, said: "As a country, we have a strategy to become the Cloud Centre of Excellence and the country of choice for data centre investments. Microsoft contributed greatly to this strategy when it chose Ireland as the home for its first mega data centre outside of the United States. We realised that the factors that influenced that decision were key differentiators that could also attract further investors."
The data centre was officially opened in 2009, with the first expansion announced in February 2012. The facility relies on Ireland's cool outside air to cool its facilities year round, resulting in greater power efficiency and an annual power usage effectiveness (PUE) average of 1.25 during peak usage hours.
Microsoft claims the data centre is also 50 percent more efficient than traditionally built facilities and use only one percent of the water used by other similarly sized data centres in the industry today.