Since acquiring its way back into the colocation space back in 2012 with the purchase of 16 facilities from Equinix, 365Main had kept the name of its iconic original flagship location in San Francisco. But today they finally took the rebranding plunge, switching to 365 Data Centers while simultaneously taking on a sacred cow of the data center space.
Yep, 365 Data Centers is kicking off its new life by putting the kibosh on the long term contract. The target is the SMB, and their approach will be to sell colocation on a pay-for-use basis with online signup and downtown locations. The new initiative will go by the name 365 Quick Start, and will aim to help SMBs ease into hybrid cloud setups and the like.
It's an interesting move to raise the profile of the kind of data center 365DC (just out some shorthand here) has in places like Buffalo, Indianapolis, Cleveland, and Nashville. Not everyone thinking of tapping the cloud wants to be tethered to Ashburn and the other big concentrations of data center space out there. And serving the smaller side of enterprise is quite different from serving the big guys in every other vertical, so why not colo?
The long term contract in colocation reflects its proximity to the real estate side of the business, and makes the investors in things like REITs happy due to long term predictability. Will the benefits of extending the cloud's pay-per-use model this far down the stack outweigh that? I suppose we'll get to see how it works out over the next few years.
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