Construction of the OVH datacenter in the central Hessian town of Limburg is a prime example of a foreign company in a still-emerging industry that has successfully established operations in Hessen. The dedicated assistance received by the company from the economic development agency Limburg-Weilburg-Diez GmbH (WFG) and the City of Limburg resulted in a hitch-free, swift, and on-schedule completion of the process. The support provided by WFG was complemented by activities carried out by Regionalmanagement Mittelhessen, Hessen Trade & Invest GmbH (HTAI), and Germany Trade & Invest (GTAI). The datacenter is expected to host 45,000 servers.
The European market leader in the cloud computing industry reached out in August 2015 to GTAI, the first point of contact at the nation-wide level for foreign companies wishing to obtain information about investment opportunities in Germany. GTAI forwarded the request to the relevant specific states.
After forwarding the inquiry to the Hessen-based agencies HTAI and Regionalmanagement Mittelhessen, WFG ultimately took the leading role in supporting OVH and proposed a specific property as a suitable location for the new datacenter.
OVH’s expansion to Hessen conducted in an exemplary manner
The decision to open a datacenter in Limburg was made back in the fall of 2016. The process has since moved along very quickly, which is particularly impressive given the immense financial and strategic impact of a decision of this magnitude. OVH was very clear about its plans to work with local service providers. Furthermore, OVH specifically sought a former industrial building to remodel into its new datacenter, a rare decision fueled in part by its desire to improve the Limburg-Weilburg region. Other companies are primarily interested in constructing large buildings or server pools and aren’t particularly concerned about benefiting the region. The property is located in the immediate vicinity of an electrical substation. This proved to be a very fortunate development, as the power supply is a key factor in decisions on where to set up a new datacenter. The proximity to the point of presence (PoP) in Frankfurt constituted an additional argument in favor of the location, as this will allow the new German datacenter to be connected to OVH’s worldwide fiber optic network in a hassle-free manner.
Timely data submissions across the board marked an additional highlight of the cooperation. The organizations’ willingness to work so closely with one another improved and accelerated the process and enabled OVH to quickly identify suitable local service providers and (governmental) points of contact.
Important for the region, important for OVH
OVH’s expansion decision is of great significance for the region of Middle Hessen, the administrative district of Limburg-Weilburg, and the city of Limburg. The expansion has been a complete success particularly in view of the digital transformation promoted by the administrative district of Limburg-Weilburg over the past few years via large investments in ensuring comprehensive broadband coverage.
The construction of this datacenter reflects the implementation of a key objective of OVH’s corporate strategy. “Germany has been experiencing growing demand for German datacenters from both customers and potential customers. This is due to Germany’s excellent economy, strict data privacy regulations, and extremely reliable electricity network. The opening of this datacenter thus marks an important milestone in OVH’s expansion strategy,” explained Peter Höhn, Director of OVH Deutschland’s German operations.
With around 260,000 servers, OVH is the European market leader as well as a worldwide leading IT infrastructure provider (source: Netcraft). The company operates 20 ultra-modern datacenters in Europe and North America as well as its own fiber optic network and also carries out its own server production operations. OVH was founded by Octave Klaba in 1999 in France. The family-owned-and-operated company is represented in 19 countries across the world and currently employs around 1,500 employees. OVH set foot in the German market in 2006 by establishing operations in Saarbrücken.