Philippines conglomerate SM Investments Corporation (SMIC) is exploring moving into the data center space.

First reported by GMA News Online, the company is looking at moving beyond retail redevelopment into data centers, and is planning at least one development in Batangas, south of Philippines capital Manila.

SM Investments Corporation philippines
SMIC is looking beyond shopping malls to data centers – SM Investments Corporation

“We are continuing to look as well at other opportunities out there… industries which are key to economic [growth] of the Philippines. Data centers, for example, we are looking into,” SMIC president and CEO Frederic DyBuncio told reporters.

DyBuncio said SMIC is now in talks with a local partner to build its first powered shells – the company's first data center is reportedly set to be located in an industrial park in Batangas.

“We just build the shell for them with all the telco, water, power, generator. That’s the model we are looking at,” he said. “Then we will look for operators to come in and manage it themselves. We will probably get something up within the year.”

In a subsequent investor update, SMIC said: “We wish to confirm that the company is exploring the data center space, but it is too early to make projections on the impact of this line of business to the financials of the company.”

Founded in 1958, SMIC (not to be confused with the Chinese semiconductor firm of the same name) is a Philippines-based company operating in multiple sectors including shopping mall development and management, retail, real estate development, banking, and tourism. The company was originally founded as a shoe store in Manila by Henry Sy Senior. When he died in 2019 aged 94, billionaire Sy was the richest man in the Philippines.

The Ayala Corporation is another Philippines conglomerate that has moved into data centers. The company took a take in a data center joint venture with STT GDC and Globe.

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