Businesses that want to reduce incidences of downtime in their operation over power challenges, has a model in MainOne Data Center also known as MDXI which has disclosed that it has achieved almost 100 percent uptime availability.
Gbenga Adegbiji, general manager, MDXI said that the company has been able to attain this level with over 90 percent of the power originating from the national grid.
Adegbiji’s statement was in response to a report that cited another data centre operator who highlighted power as a major challenge across the industry in Nigeria and Africa as a whole. Power availability and reliability is the most critical variable.
Nigeria generates around 4,000MW of electricity which is by far below what power-hungry businesses require to power their businesses. Notwithstanding, Adegbiji said in an interview that it does not mean data centre enterprises cannot thrive in the country.
Since 2015, MainOne has received over 90 percent power uptime and it plans to achieve 95 percent availability in 2018, based on a growing partnership with a local power distribution company.
“We recognised the crippling impact of downtimes, the peculiarities of the Nigerian power environment as an albatross that have forced many companies to relocate outside Nigeria,” he said. “We then ensured MDXI was established with the most robust electricity power and back-up arrangements, in line with the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) ANSI/TIA-942, the leading telecommunications infrastructure standard for data centers.”
As a complement, the company made provision for the full complement of generators and diesel tanks with capacity of over 100,000 litres to secure the data centre’s operations and guarantee 99.995 percent availability.
MDXI partnered with Eko Disco and co-invested in a dedicated 33KV feeder and line connection to the national grid through the Ajah sub-station.
The direct connection provides MDXI with access to multiple power generating plants and guarantees backup in the event that one plant goes down.
“This was a capital investment of hundreds of millions in substation equipment and dedicated power lives which bypass all ‘last-mile’ challenges encountered in electricity distribution. This has guaranteed an increase in power availability at the data center from 50 percent average commercial power availability to between 95 percent and 98 percent,” Adegbiji said.
A near 100 percent power availability does not necessarily come at a cut throat rate for MDXI. The company has been able to guarantee a cost savings mechanism which is passed on to its numerous customers like banks, government ministry departments, international financial organisations and the large over-the-top operators.
Adeoye Fadeyibi, chief executive officer, Eko DisCo said the partnership with MDXI is an example of how privatisation of the power sector is making meaningful contribution to the Nigerian economy.
“With MDXI’s significant investment in last mile transmission and distribution infrastructure, EKEDC has been able to provide an average of 88% uninterrupted uptime to the data center on a monthly basis since its launch in January 2015,” Fadeyibi said.