The Internet’s Critical Crossroads

If fibre cables constitute the road network across which data flows, then one of the internet’s critical crossroads lies within the handsome art deco exterior of a skyscraper on the edge of Lower Manhattan.

In January 2022 Cordiant Digital Infrastructure (Cordiant Digital’s London-listed “core digital infrastructure fund”) purchased the assets of DataGryd, thereby acquiring close to 200,000 square feet of data centre and technical space in this building, which is known as 60 Hudson.

“This building has been serving a critical role in American communications for almost a century” Explains Benn Mikula, Cordiant Co-CEO and Managing Partner. “Erected by the Western Union Corporation as a telegraph hub, it was engineered to accommodate vast amounts of heavy telegraph equipment and copper cabling. The quality of the building, and the pre-existing communications routes leading to it, allowed it to remain relevant through the transition from telegraph to telephone (analogue and digital circuit switched), and from telephone network to Internet. Today hundreds of carriers and content providers occupy space in this building so they can balance traffic and shift traffic from their network to other networks.”

“We understood the critical nature of 60 Hudson, and found in DataGryd (which we have since renamed Hudson InterXchange) a combination of existing tenants, high quality infrastructure and expansion potential. This is not a typical colocation facility, and the understanding of the precise role of interconnect data centres was key to our investment case.”

“Everyone talks about wanting data centres, but within major cities you need one or two interconnection points where hundreds of carriers meet so they can move traffic from one network to another,” explained Benn Mikula Cordiant’s co-CEO. “A lot of investors may struggle to understand that. But because of our sector knowledge we know the interconnect niche.”

“This is a strategic asset with significant growth potential,” said Steven Marshall, Chairman of Cordiant’s Digital infrastructure practice (and formerly president of NY-listed digital giant American Tower). “It is a company that can deliver scale, high quality infrastructure, power and technical skill in what we believe is the most connected building in the most connected city on the planet.”

Linking telecoms companies, software firms, financial giants, content deliver networks, cloud computing operators and other key players on the Internet is the defining feature of interconnect centres. Booming data demand drives a knock-on desire for connections–so networks can more effectively talk with one another. In consequence Cordiant Digital plans to invest $75 million to nearly double Hudson InterXchange’s footprint.