CPP Investments, which is the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), alongside Pacific Asset Management Company, a real estate investment manager in South Korea, today announced the formation of a ~$170m USD (KRW 200bn) joint venture to develop a carrier-neutral, 1.07 million sqft (99.1k sqm) hyperscale data center in Seoul, South Korea, which will be known as Jukjeon Data Centre. Specifically, CPP Investments and a fund managed by Pacific Asset Management will commit a total of ~$116.5m USD (KRW 137bn) in equity for the data center development project in South Korea, with each party’s equity allocation as follows:

  • CPP Investments: ~$107m USD (KRW 126bn) of equity, equating to 92% of the joint commitment
  • Pacific Asset Management: ~$9.5m USD (KRW 11bn) of equity, equating to 8% of the joint commitment

Additionally, other investors in the joint venture include South Korea-based firms, namely Dreammark 1, GS Retail, and Shinhan Investment Corporation.

Hyundai Engineering & Construction (E&C), who is constructing the hyperscale data center, references ~$705m USD (KRW 828bn) as the total investment for the development project (i.e., debt and equity). To this end, Hyundai E&C states that the construction costs for the data center amount to ~$455m USD (KRW 535bn).

Jukjeon Data Centre – CPP Investments, Pacific Asset Management

CPP Investments and Pacific Asset Management’s Jukjeon Data Centre is located in the eastern part of the metropolitan area of Seoul, South Korea. Particularly, Jukjeon Data Centre is close to the Pangyo Techno Valley, a technology hub and industrial complex in the city of Pangyo, Seongnam.

Jukjeon Data Centre CPP Investments Pacific Asset Management

Jukjeon Data Centre will comprise four above-ground and four below-ground floors. Together, this facility will span a total of 1.07 million sqft (99.1k sqm) of gross floor area (GFA).

Timeline and Operations

As of March 2022, construction of the data center has commenced with completion anticipated in June 2024. Once ready for service, Jukjeon Data Centre will be operated by LG CNS, a data center operator in South Korea, which is a subsidiary of LG Corporation.

Customers and Connectivity

Jukjeon Data Centre will target serving cloud service providers, internet service providers, and information technology companies. Additionally, the data center will provide connectivity to multiple telecom carriers.

Competitors

Over the past 12 months, notable data center operators have been making inroads into South Korea, particularly in the hyperscale segment:

  • Equinix (xScale): in January 2022, Equinix and GIC formed a new $525m joint venture to develop and operate two facilities in Seoul, South Korea, which will provide 45+ megawatts of power capacity
  • Digital Realty: opened Digital Seoul 1 (ICN10) which comprises 12 megawatts of critical IT capacity across 22k sqft in Seoul’s Sangam Digital Media City. Additionally, Digital Realty announced plans to develop Digital Seoul 2 (ICN11) which has the potential to offer 64 megawatts of critical IT capacity across 970k sqft
  • Digital Edge: backed by Stonepeak Infrastructure, Digital Edge acquired one data center in Seoul (Gangnam) and a cable landing station in Busan (Centum City), South Korea

CPP Investments – Overview

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments) has its headquarters in Toronto, Canada and oversees $550bn Canadian dollars ($433bn USD) of assets under management (AUM). The firm invests in public equity, private equity, real estate, infrastructure, and fixed income strategies.

Digital Infrastructure

Within digital infrastructure, CPP Investments has invested in all of the major sub-sectors, including towers, data centers, fiber, and small cells & DAS:

  • BAI Communications (BAI): CPP Investments is the majority shareholder of BAI, a provider of distributed antenna systems (DAS) for transit operators. Additionally, CPP funded a portion of an incremental $2.0bn USD ($2.4bn Canadian dollar) commitment to BAI, which was in-part used to fund BAI’s acquisition of Mobilitie, an owner of small cells, distributed antenna systems (DAS), and towers
  • Cellnex Telecom: CPP Investments holds a 5% stake in Cellnex’s public equity as of December 31, 2021
  • Japanese Data Centre Development Fund: CPP Investments allocated ~$320m USD (~$400m Canadian dollars) of equity into a joint venture with Mitsui & Co. The first investment for the joint venture is the development of a 45-megawatt hyperscale data center near Osaka, Japan, with Colt Data Centre Services (DCS) managing the construction
  • Ziply Fiber: CPP Investments holds ~19% equity ownership overall in Ziply, a residential broadband provider in the U.S. Pacific Northwest
Mary Zhang covers Data Centers for Dgtl Infra, including Equinix (NASDAQ: EQIX), Digital Realty (NYSE: DLR), CyrusOne, CoreSite Realty, QTS Realty, Switch Inc, Iron Mountain (NYSE: IRM), Cyxtera (NASDAQ: CYXT), and many more. Within Data Centers, Mary focuses on the sub-sectors of hyperscale, enterprise / colocation, cloud service providers, and edge computing.

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