Articles

$10 Million Data Center Opens its Doors in Chattanooga, Tenn.

The facility enables customers to transfer, backup and restore large business-critical data sets and systems in minutes, if not seconds.

by Mike Pare, Chattanooga Times/Free Press, Tenn. / March 2, 2017

(TNS) -- An Atlanta company has started up a $10 million data center in Chattanooga, deciding to locate the facility here due to EPB's smart grid and the city's proximity to major fiber lines.

"Electricity is the life blood for a data center," said Jake Ring, chief executive of dcBLOX, which plans to add 20 jobs in Chattanooga when fully staffed.

He also said key in-ground fiber carriers run between Atlanta and Chattanooga and offer "a huge amount" of connectivity.

"That allows for easy movement of data and content for customers," Ring said.

He said the center, located off Main Street near Central Avenue, already has a large Chattanooga customer and another company signed up in Dalton, Ga. The facility enables customers to transfer, backup and restore large business-critical data sets and systems in minutes, if not seconds, the company CEO and co-founder said.

Ring said dcBLOX was started in Atlanta in 2014. The company's first data center was opened in Atlanta and Chattanooga is its second.

"Chattanooga has been on my radar screen," he said. Ring said he once worked for a General Electric division that supported EPB's smart-grid system.

Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke said in a statement that the city has "the innovation assets and necessary infrastructure in place to attract next-generation technology companies."

Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger said efforts over the past decade to make the area a technological destination are paying off.

"We spend a lot of time and effort educating people for the kind of jobs dcBLOX offers and our reward is when companies like dcBLOX come to Hamilton County offering good, family-wage jobs," he said.

Ring said plans are to build more data centers in other so-called second tier cities such as Chattanooga.

"We see a lot of demand in places like Chattanooga, Winston-Salem, N.C., and Nashville, but not enough capacity," he said.

In Chattanooga, dcBLOX took an empty printing warehouse and turned it into its newest data center, Ring said.

He said the center can provide almost instantaneous disaster recovery for data-intense applications.

If Delta Air Lines had such a system, it could have avoided the major computer outage it experienced in January, Ring said.

He said dcBLOX's center offers 99.999 percent reliability for both cloud and network systems.

Ring said dcBLOX brings "a new level of security and confidence to technology leaders moving workloads to the cloud."

©2017 the Chattanooga Times/Free Press (Chattanooga, Tenn.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.