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50 Best Companies to Watch 2019

An Interview with Jonathan Arnold, Volta Data Centres Managing Director: ‘We’re Central London’s Most Resilient Data Center’

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“As an edge data centre, our commitment to 100 percent power is so strong that we also offer the Platinum Power SLA at an extra charge: one year of free service in the case of an SLA failure.”

Whether it’s a public Cloud, private Cloud, or hybrid colocation, every Cloud must ultimately be located in a physical space, with high-quality infrastructure and first-class connectivity. Volta Data Centres is designed with Cloud computing services in mind, equipped with the latest technology, connected with world-class carriers on-site, and has the ability to grow in both space and power in central London.

Volta is the fastest-growing independent data centre in the UK. Operating since 2013 in Farringdon, Central London, it has a 100 percent up time record—something that’s very important to its portfolio of international clients.

The 8,450 square metre Volta Data Centre is situated in the former Reuters Building and features more than 20 diverse building entry points for complete connectivity, total security, and maximum power.

Offering industry-leading resilience in central London, Volta’s clients benefit from two separate 33kV supplies via two independent grid substations. A convenient Zone one location, only 20 minutes’ walk from Liverpool Street, makes Volta the data centre of choice for clients from the cloud, financial services, and tech sectors, amongst others.

As a market-leading data centre, Volta has won many awards, including Deloitte UK Technology Fast 50; Deloitte Technology Fast 500 EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); DCS Awards 2017 & 2018 Colocation Provider of the Year, DCS Awards 2016 Data Centre Innovation of the Year; and SVC Award 2016 Innovation of the Year.

Jonathan Arnold, Volta Data Centres MD, spoke exclusively to The Silicon Review. Below is an excerpt.

Why was the company set up?

There was a unique opportunity to have a modern data center in a truly downtown London location, which is hard for anyone else to replicate. Since then, the company has grown organically over the past five years winning a lot of new business across multiple verticals.

We believe that Volta has demonstrated that we are leaders within our industry by being first to market with ‘power by the hour’ and providing 100 percent SLA.

What are the factors that make Volta Data Centres stand out from the competition?

Volta is extremely well-connected, with 11 Tier I carriers boasting direct fibre, and a host of Tier II carriers. Operating from our carrier and cloud-neutral edge data centre, Volta is committed to equipping your business with direct and fast access to all the internet offers—as well as other data centres and world markets.

As a market-leading edge data centre, Volta prides itself on delivering excellent client service to end-users in the heart of the city. The company is dedicated to:

  • Providing 100 percent uptime: two diverse power supplies ensure Volta can offer an exceptional level of service to all its clients.
  • Staying carrier and cloud-neutral: with 20+ diverse entry points, and over 25 carriers on-site, Volta provides the connectivity you need from the provider of your choice.
  • Complete flexibility: as your company grows and expands, Volta enables it to seamlessly and securely connect to the world.

How successful was your first project roll on?

Surprisingly well! As with any major first project, there were some teething problems but the final outcome was delivered on time and within budget.

How do you stay relevant to the consumer interests and needs in this highly volatile market?

We stay relevant to the customers’ needs by providing the following services:

Central London Colocation: In addition to being highly resilient and concurrently maintainable to the highest Tier III standards, Volta’s data centre provides a colocation centre of choice in the heart of London. Its Great Sutton Street facility is perfect for organisations who want to take advantage of all the benefits of colocation while keeping their data within easy reach.

Why co-locate?

Whether your company is a start-up or a well-established global business, it relies on Big Data to grow and develop, using data analysis to gather crucial insights into consumer behaviour and to inform important strategy decisions. As your place of work and the hub of your communications, your office is not equipped to safely and securely store that critical infrastructure.

That’s why businesses of all sizes choose colocation, renting out purpose-built space for their data in the form of cabinets and racks (a rack is a standardised frame for mounting equipment and hardware). Colocation providers deliver high levels of security, with security guards at all times and biometric access control upon request.

Colocation providers also bring peace of mind, with data centres offering reliable backups and UPS devices to protect data against outages, including those caused by a natural disaster, fire or flooding.

100% Uptime: At Volta, a superior level of resilience means all clients receive a 100 percent uptime service level agreement (SLA), as standard. Its location on two separate diverse power rings within London’s upgraded 33kV network makes Volta one of the most power-resilient data centres across the UK. It’s crucial that your colocation is available to you on a 24/7 basis with complete consistency, and Volta’s fully N+1 power infrastructure makes that possible.

As an edge data centre, our commitment to 100 percent power is so strong that we also offer the Platinum Power SLA at an extra charge: one year of free service in the case of an SLA failure. To make this agreement possible, the Volta infrastructure has been thoroughly examined and approved by insurance underwriters, meaning that all our clients — with regular SLAs and Platinum Power SLAs alike — avail of the same rock-solid and reliable Volta facilities.

Carriers: Whether your business requires internet connectivity for Cloud-based applications or links to a private WAN, most organisations recognise the importance of a carrier-neutral data centre. Volta goes far further, offering multiple Tier I and Tier II carriers options with diverse entry points into the building. As a result, the connectivity that Volta provides is not reliant upon a single fibre provider – it is a diverse range of fibre connections, including significant back-up options.

High Density: High-density computing is a compelling way to address the challenges presented by Big Data. Strategies designed to maximise productivity and efficiency, increase available power density and the physical footprint computing power of data centres, high-density computing is crucial to future-proofing the storage of your essential data. At Volta, high-density racks support 10kW+ — increasing the efficiency and scalability of your IT infrastructure.

In addition, Volta deploys Volta deploys various row-based cooling solutions across its data halls, enabling the ultimate in flexibility when it comes to rack power density. This system suits the very latest in server technology, while the ability to place high-density racks alongside traditional racks equips Volta for the future.

Customer Service: Volta prides itself on providing the very highest standards of customer service. Every aspect of care and support has been carefully considered, from the very first point of contact with clients, throughout the installation process, and continuing onward as you become a long-term client.

Volta’s high Net Promoter Score speaks volumes, demonstrating the Data Centre’s commitment to high standards and customer service. With 24/7 support and assistance as part of your contract, Volta strives to provide clients with personalised care and attention. Feedback is important, so if you’d like to address any aspect of Volta customer care, the on-site team is ready and waiting to discuss it with you.

Remote Hands: Volta provides support through a highly-experienced team of Technical Support Engineers (TSE). TSEs are on hand 24/7 to provide a full range of support to Volta clients, including a Remote Hands service.

Volta defines the Remote Hands service as any instance where intervention to customer equipment is required, where actions were taken are in response to precise client instruction and the responsibility of the outcome of those actions remains with the client. This also includes the escorting and supervision of Volta customers and any third-party contractors.

How do you keep your company up and running?

The amusing part of this question is that all of our customers rely on Volta to keep their business up and running! Over half of our customers are global companies and London tends to be a top choice for data center location and having our DC in a downtown location makes it easier for global companies to get to.

Where do you see your company a couple of years from now?

Within the next couple of years, we believe our Central London site will be at near full capacity and there will be additional sites in the pipeline.

Jonathan Arnold: A Formidable Leader

Jonathan Arnold has been in IT and business communications solutions since 1996. Throughout the years, he primarily focused on sales and account management, gaining experience in companies such as Siemens, WorldCom, Sirocom, Azzurri Communications and Daisy Group, signing multi-million-pound deals and delivering business growth.

Prior to joining Volta, Jonathan held the position of Enterprise Sales Director at Daisy Group. Prior to that, he was Managing Director of ServAssure, part of Daisy Group, heading a team of over 30 people including sales, service desk, projects and warehouse.

“We believe that Volta has demonstrated that we are leaders within our industry by being first to market with ‘power by the hour’ and providing 100 percent SLA.”