JLL, Lumen, Schneider Partner for Quick U.S. Rollout of Modular Data Centers

Schneider Electric - boothJLL, a global leader in commercial real estate and investment management, has joined forces with Lumen Technologies and Schneider Electric to introduce turn-key modular data center solutions across the United States. This strategic alliance would address the pressing challenges of supply, deployment speed, and scalability faced data center clients.

JLL, with over two centuries of expertise in real estate, will spearhead the comprehensive site selection process for these modular data centers. Amidst the land constraints plaguing today’s data center market, JLL‘s expansive market coverage would be instrumental in rapidly identifying and securing optimal sites, including approximately 5,000 along Lumen’s fiber network. This approach would significantly reduce the deployment times typically associated with traditional data center constructions.

Lumen Technologies, renowned for its global network capabilities that encompass everything from metro connectivity to edge cloud, security, and managed services, will inject its technical prowess into the venture. With one of the largest and most connected networks globally, Lumen claims to be uniquely positioned to offer the speed, global footprint, and edge capabilities essential for meeting customer requirements in an evolving digital landscape.

Completing the triumvirate is Schneider Electric, the multinational giant in digital automation and energy management. Schneider Electric will bring its expertise in the design and construction of modular data centers to the table, ensuring operational readiness within an expedited timeframe of six to nine months.

Driving Demand: Edge Applications, 5G, AI, IoT

The joint project takes place against a background of rapidly increasing demand in the data center sector, driven by developments in edge applications, 5G, artificial intelligence (AI), and the Internet of Things (IoT).

Major businesses from a variety of industries were fighting for data center space in the first half of 2023, according to JLL‘s 1H 2023 North American Data Center Report. The industry would be forced to embrace innovative solutions like modular data centers, which enable quick installation, expedited deployment, and IoT flexibility, because the majority of the year’s supply has already been reserved.

“In today’s digitally driven market, data centers and networks are essential for business transformation,” said Michele Hix, Vice President of Strategic Customers, North America Operations at Schneider Electric. “Our collaboration with JLL and Lumen Technologies provides our clients with options to handle the megatrends shapingx business, cities, and consumers everywhere with solutions that are digital, sustainable, efficient, and built to scale.”

Vincent Provenzano, Head of Advanced Solutions, VAR Channel at Lumen, highlighted the comprehensive benefits of this agreement. “Digital transformations and next-gen tech like AI require more than just speed to market. Customers are also looking for edge compute, data accessibility, increased network security, application performance, and control. This agreement draws on an innovative Lumen portfolio to deliver solutions that increase efficiency, speed, and enable business growth.”

Leading the JLL team in this venture are Executive Managing Director Joe Smurdon and Executive Vice President Mark To. Addressing the challenges faced by middle-market companies, Mr. Smurdon emphasized, “Most hyperscalers are struggling to keep up with GPU demand and are allocating their capacity to the larger corporates, which leaves middle-market companies in a lurch. Additionally, the time and capital required to bring additional computing capacity online takes several years, so these companies are forced to put band-aids on their legacy facilities; however, our approach allows for a modular solution to be up and running in a fraction of the time and cost.”

JLL, Lumen Technologies, and Schneider Electric collectively promise a key speed-to-market data center solution that transcends the limitations associated with traditional data center builds. This pioneering initiative would not only champion rapid deployment but also ensure proximity to end users, thereby reducing latency while enhancing scalability – critical factors for businesses gearing up for the future in a digitally-dominated world.