DrAmerican technology company Alphabet (Google) is significantly expanding its presence in Germany. The central components of an investment program of more than 1 billion euros are a data center in Hanau near Frankfurt, a new cloud infrastructure in the Berlin-Brandenburg region, and a contract with energy supplier Enge to acquire climate-neutral electricity in Germany from the next year.
“Germany has always been a very important country for Google, we opened our second office outside the US here 20 years ago,” Philip Justus, Head of Google Germany, of FAZ told Us in the Future.
The new facility, located in Marie-Curie-Strasse in Hanau, accommodates four floors and about ten thousand square meters of computing infrastructure where data from users of the company’s cloud services is processed. Google commissioned data center provider NDC-Garbe to build, and on Monday the official handover of the keys to the building complex was made.
Google is increasingly setting up the cloud division as a pillar of income along with the advertising business, which is still dominant, that relies on targeted ads in search or on the YouTube video platform. Competition has increased in recent years, particularly among the major cloud service providers. In terms of turnover, Google is currently in third place after the two American Internet companies Amazon and Microsoft. But in the past few months, the group confirmed its claim to offset cooperation agreements with Lufthansa, Deutsche Bank and the email company Otto. In terms of staff, Google has long repositioned itself for this purpose in Germany and has been successful in bringing in managers with experience in business with corporate clients, such as former Managing Director of SAP Germany, Daniel Holz, now responsible for Google’s cloud business in Germany and Europe Central.
At the same time, the new investment plan shows that a regional presence remains technically necessary in this business, even though data can now be transmitted over the Internet at lightning speed. “Physical proximity to our customers is important in the cloud area, it is about response time, performance and availability,” explains Cloud Manager Holz and cites e-commerce as an example of corresponding applications in the millisecond scale. Users expect real-time recommendations. As another means of location in Hanau, Holz cites the important internet hub De-CIX in the neighboring main city of Frankfurt.
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