You have held diverse roles in your career, spanning functions like marketing, business operations and sales. Tell us about your journey and the most rewarding parts.
I started my career at Oracle in their contracts department, before transitioning into sales. I continued my journey with added responsibilities in marketing and operations across every aspect of digital infrastructure, including datacenters, optical fiber networks, managed services, hardware and software sales. I have built my career on solving business problems for customers and seeing them succeed with our support. I have always worked with companies in a supporting role in the digital world: whether it means providing the high-density power to backup rendering for a new animation film or providing high-performance computing for higher education research in their quest to solve world hunger or reducing the latency between an application and its end-user to increase performance and give the application and its owner a cutting edge advantage. These are the areas that motivate me to find more ways to make a difference.
A highlight of my career at Abovenet was my contribution to the creation of a new exchange platform for media and entertainment companies to digitally transfer content for movie and television production on demand. The service allowed them to exchange content more securely and faster compared to their traditional methods, while only bearing the costs for the bandwidth used. The software platform, while ahead of its time, funded the installation of optical fiber in every major studio and post-production company in Los Angeles, New York, and London. Fast forward a few years later to the creation of cloud services, CoreSite was the first in the datacenter industry to develop a similar exchange platform that connects companies looking to exchange content and workflows with their partners and providers securely and on demand.
At CoreSite I am most proud of my contributions to the development of CoreSite’s strategy and supporting the continuous growth. In the last two years we have added over 100MW of purpose-built datacenter capacity across four of CoreSite’s eight major metropolitan markets in the US. This allows CoreSite to support the increasing demand for new use cases like cloud, AI, data analytics, research, edge compute, rendering, 5G and other innovative technologies.
Having been in the datacenter and connectivity industry for over two decades, since your MFN days, followed by AboveNet, i/o and CoreSite, how have you seen customers’ outsourcing requirements evolve as they are evaluating a third-party datacenter operator for their data-hosting needs?
Enterprises are definitely getting more intentional about their digital strategy and becoming more prudent about it than ever before. Interconnection has become an even more important influencer for deployment decisions — especially within the enterprise segment. With latency sensitive applications and the exponential growth of data, edge computing and access to cloud technologies are critical factors for the enterprise. The enterprise IT decision makers today proffer more knowledge to us about how to utilize colocation within a holistic IT strategy.
How will the pandemic impact the digital infrastructure in the long run?
The pandemic has put the spotlight on digital infrastructure, which has traditionally played a behind-the-scenes supporting role. The focus has propelled acute awareness of the technologies and infrastructure that support the way we manage our business and related capabilities including remote working. We will continue to uncover new technologies to sustain these critical changes, and digital infrastructure will be at the core of our new normal. The pandemic will force enterprises to pivot from on-premise datacenters to cloud and colocation facilities in order to transform their datacenter into a hub for interoperating their workloads. In addition, datacenter managers have realized that colocation providers can do a better job of maintaining a mission-critical space, especially during unprecedented circumstances.