African cloud and colo provider PAIX Data Centres has announced a joint venture with the Djibouti Sovereign Fund to construct a data center in Djibouti.

PAIX will purchase the land, buildings, and data center equipment for the 50,000 sq ft (4,650 sqm) facility in Djibouti City.

Djibouti Accra Ghana
PAIX Data Centres' facility in Accra, Ghana – Paix Data Centres on LinkedIn

The facility, dubbed JIB1, is expected to have an IT capacity of 5MW and is scheduled to open in 2026.

The companies said the new facility will serve as an interconnection hub for Internet service providers, cloud providers, financial institutions, and enterprises in the region.

Jean-Andre Gbarssin, chief investment officer at Djoubi Sovereign Fund, said: “PAIX Djibouti will serve as a catalyst for digital inclusion and economic development, empowering businesses to unlock new opportunities and realize their full potential in the digital age. And we’re delighted as the Sovereign Wealth Fund to be part of this investment.”

Wouter van Hulten, CEO at PAIX, said: “PAIX’s investment in JIB1 positions it at the crossroads of connectivity between Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. The strong network hub that is created by the aggregation of multiple undersea cable landing points connecting to terrestrial cables makes Djibouti a highly attractive gateway.”

PAIX currently operates data centers in Accra, Ghana; and Nairobi, Kenya. Africa50 invested $20 million into the company in 2022.

The Djibouti Sovereign Fund also owns local electricity firm Electricite de Djibouti and local telco Djibouti Telecom.

While not a major data center market, Djibouti is a major landing point in East Africa. There are currently ten subsea cables landing in Djibouti, with a further three under construction. Cables landing in the country include AAE-1, DARE1, EASSy, Europe India Gateway, SeaMeWe-3, and Aden-Djibouti. The 2Africa cable landed in Djibouti in 2022 and is set to go live this year.

The Djibouti Data Center (DDC) in Djibouti City, which hosts the Djibouti Internet Exchange (DjIX) opened in 2013. The DDC is a joint venture between Djibouti Telecom and Djibouti Data Center SARL, a group of local and international investors.

Wingu Africa currently operates two data centers in Djibouti, with China Telecom and Orange Business Services also having Points of Presence in the country, according to CloudScene.