QTS Realty Trust today announced its Q1 2021 earnings, provided updates on its data center leasing and development activity during Q1 2021, and slightly increased its full-year 2021 guidance for key metrics.

Leasing Activity in Q1 2021 – QTS Realty Trust

In Q1 2021, QTS secured new and renewal data center lease signings of $20.6m in annualized rent, a decrease from $40.3m last quarter, which was a record for the company. However, lease signings of $20.6m are in-line with the company’s historical quarterly averages, whereas Q4 2020 was a positive outlier.

In terms of mix, QTS’ Q1 2021 leasing results were driven by both its hyperscale and hybrid colocation customer segments. Notable lease signings during the quarter include:

  • Ashburn, Virginia (DC – 2): 8 megawatts with a hyperscale customer (Oracle Cloud) that will anchor the facility
  • Various Facilities: several larger (i.e., 1+ megawatt) enterprise hybrid colocation leases

Overall, QTS’ 8-megawatt signing in Ashburn, Virginia demonstrates that the company is on-track to meet its new hyperscale customer target of signing two to four 5+ megawatt leases per year. Indeed, this compares to the company’s prior goal of signing one to three 5+ megawatt leases per year.


At the end of Q1 2021, QTS’ backlog stood at $152m, which was down 1.4% compared to $154m last quarter. Of this total backlog, $73.0m, equivalent to 48%, is commencing in 2021, giving QTS strong visibility for the year.

Development Capital Expenditures – QTS Realty Trust

During Q1 2021, QTS brought on-line 18 megawatts of gross power and 56.0k sqft of raised floor. Specifically, this capacity came within the data center markets of Atlanta, Northern Virginia, Texas, and Portland.

By the end of 2021, QTS expects to complete 11 development projects, which in aggregate will comprise 275k sqft and cost $543m. Notably, over 70% of the investment for these development projects is going into the Northern Virginia and Atlanta markets.

Full-Year 2021 Guidance – QTS Realty Trust

QTS increased its full-year 2021 guidance for revenue, adjusted EBITDA, and operating funds from operations (FFO). At the new mid-point, QTS’ guidance implies no more than a 0.5% increase for any of these metrics. Specifically, QTS’ 2021 revised guidance, at the mid-point, now contemplates:

  • Revenue of $609m, up 0.5% from the company’s original $606m guidance
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $337m, up 0.4% from the company’s original $335m guidance
  • Operating FFO per share of $2.99, up 0.3% from the company’s original $2.98 guidance

Additionally, QTS is also increasing its full-year 2021 outlook for capital expenditures from $850m to $925m, at the mid-point, which equates to an 8.8% increase.

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. Mary has over 5 years of experience in research and writing for Data Centers.


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