Microsoft has announced plans to establish a new datacenter region in Denmark to accelerate the country’s green, digital transformation. Read the latest news about why Microsoft looks to Denmark.
The new datacenter in Denmark is designated for its Azure cloud services and the announcement followed the establishment of two regions in Norway, and comes after the company started work on a data center in Sweden. In fact, Microsoft will have two regions in Sweden, one in Gävle Sandviken and another in Staffanstorp. The Azure based services will ensure that data is not going outside of Swedish soil but still have availability of the data in case one of the regions where to go down.
The new datacenter will be sustainable, powered by 100 percent renewable energy with a forecast to bring digital upskilling to 200,000 Danes by 2024.
Microsoft in Scandinavia
According to Microsoft, the new site could reduce the carbon footprint of computing in Denmark by up to 93 percent more efficient than traditional enterprise data centers. This will be the most significant investment in Microsoft’s 30-year history in Denmark. The datacenter region will provide Danish customers of all sizes faster access to the Microsoft Cloud, world-class security and the ability to store data at rest in the country.
Sweden seems to have got more attention from big cloud companies than its Scandinavian neighbors, with Denmark sometimes lagging. Sweden has Facebook’s European flagship at Luleå, along with other developments around Stockholm, while Norway has plenty of hyperscale facilities, including the two existing Microsoft facilities.
Unlike the other regions that Microsoft have available worldwide, the Swedish and Danish datacenters will be in smaller scale and will therefore not have all services available at launch. However, more and more services will be added later after rollout based upon a predefined timeline and some services based upon customer request.
Related: On Copenhagen’s Amager Island
Denmark’s green digital future
Microsoft’s investment in Denmark is a part of #DigitalLeapDenmark, a commitment to the country’s green digital future. Today, Microsoft employs more than a thousand people in the country and has recently invested in a quantum computing research lab in collaboration with the University of Copenhagen and the Technical University of Denmark.
Data center building is apparently immune to the economic woes caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, and is therefore part of many governments’ reconstruction plans – and Denmark is no exception. “The Government’s ambition is for Denmark to emerge from Covid-19 even greener, stronger and more socially just,” said Nicolai Wammen, Danish Minister of Finance.
Companies planning to use Azure should establish a main governance strategy to ensure a set of baseline policies and processes and configure a landing zone if they plan to migrate virtual machines out to Microsoft Azure.
Microsoft’s appreciation of Denmark’s green and digital leadership
“Building a hyper-scale datacenter in Denmark means we’ll store Danish data in Denmark, make computing more accessible at even faster speeds, secure data with our world-class security, protect data with Danish privacy laws, and do more to provide to the people of Denmark our best digital skills training. This investment reflects our deep appreciation of Denmark’s green and digital leadership globally and our commitment to its future,” said Brad Smith, President, Microsoft.
Danish Azure customers include Arla Foods, Carlsberg, Danfoss, Energinet, Grundfos, Pandora, Maersk, Saxo Bank, Simcorp, and the Danish Ministry of Taxation, already relying on the Microsoft Cloud to power critical business applications, new customer experiences and innovative data solutions. Microsoft plans to help local utility Energinet offer a more transparent energy supply option which gives information about carbon mitigation.
For new users, it is important to understand that using built-in governance features within Azure, also can define policies which ensures that services can only be deployed within the Nordic datacenters and not in the other Azure regions worldwide.
The Microsoft Cloud
The Microsoft Cloud enables innovation through the latest technology advancements including: Microsoft Azure, an ever-expanding set of cloud services that offers computing, networking, databases, analytics, AI and Internet of Things (IoT) services; Microsoft 365, the world’s productivity cloud that delivers best-of-breed productivity apps and security solutions; and Dynamics 365 and Power Platform, which enable organizations to rapidly build and manage critical enterprise business solutions at scale with intelligent business applications.
The Danish datacenter region will provide customers with access to low-latency, enterprise-grade cloud services with world-class data security and compliance. In addition, the new region will deliver Azure Availability Zones, to provide additional tolerance and high availability for applications.
“We welcome Microsoft’s investments in Denmark, which reflects what we have on offer here in terms of supporting and running some of the world’s most sustainable data centers” said Henrik L. Hansen, CEO of the Danish Data Center Industry Association.
A whitepaper gives information on data control and security compliance. Microsoft Sweden has also created a blueprint for Public Sector which is a collection of tools, templates, policies and reports to support Microsoft Azure cloud adoption for Public sector.
“Microsoft is a strategic business partner and the establishment of a Danish data center region creates the basis for us to be able to use solutions based on cloud to an even greater extent. Our business is based on stable, secure and compliant operation to the financial sector, and JN Data’s task is to connect the existing systems with cloud solutions so that JN Data’s community can take full advantage of cloud. By doing so our customers achieve a higher speed of development, which they can benefit from when developing solutions for their customers and ultimately for the banks’ customers,” said Søren Lindgaard, CEO, JN Data.
Companies that want to monitor and see coming Azure changes in regions should follow Microsoft Azure Blog.
Microsoft Looks to Denmark, written by Tor Kjolberg
All images © Microsoft, except portraits of Lindegaard, Hansen and Wammen (press photos)