Web Werks looks to grow presence in India’s M&E sector

MUMBAI: Web Werks, which works in the area of providing clients with data centers and cloud services, is looking to grow its presence in the country across industries including media and entertainment (M&E).

The company is located in more than three countries with more than six geographically located data centers, offering hosting services on Dedicated Servers, Cloud, Virtualisation, Co-location, and Disaster Recovery Services. They are driving their next phase growth through investments of Rs. 400 crore as they plan their expansion into Delhi, Chennai and other key metro cities in India.

In M&E, the opportunity for the company lies in the growing adoption of content over digital platforms and a burgeoning segment of OTT viewing. The demand for Data storage is huge, especially with the 5G spectrum also gaining interest.

Web Werks CEO Nikhil Rathi explains that the Web Werks‘ datacenter is unique as it has three internet exchanges located within the premises. It is also connected to the National Exchange, making it the center-point for all traffic that travels domestically.

“This means media and entertainment traffic on the internet such as live streaming of events and content can move via the shortest path to far geographical locations in the country. Web Werks has over 160 ISPs connected directly in its datacenter directly which further enhances the shortest path to the Internet World,” Rathi noted.

“Customers such as Netflix and several CDN providers host in DC to serve content outside. Web Werks thus uniquely serves the high bandwidth needs of the media and entertainment sector. Furthermore, Web Werks serves 20 billion transactional messages through its clients every month.”

He added that Web Werks Data Centers have been leaders in India for the past two decades and are located in more than three countries with more than six geographically located data centers.

Web Werks plans to expand to all metro cities and fiber landing locations – 10MW Bangalore, 10MW Chennai, Hyderabad, 20MW in Mumbai for hyper-scale play and a 2MW in Kolkata for serving the east. “Web Werks will be investing Rs 200 crore in Delhi and Rs 200 crore in Chennai over the life of the project to build the DCs apart from real estate costs,” Rathi noted.

When asked about the big challenge that M&E companies face when it comes to data storage and recovery he noted that media companies have huge storage and serving needs. The popularity of a video or an article he points out is almost unpredictable. “Also, in an interlinked world data is often pulled up or referred by another. All this needs data storage as well as high availability via disaster recovery plans so that a 24x7x365 continuous serving is available for users.”

He also feels that the M&E sector definitely needs to use more cloud solutions such as CDNs for serving content as well as for analytics that capture and show user behavioral patterns. Cloud use he explains could help media and entertainment companies address a number of pressing business challenges.

“Companies in that field are under pressure to continuously create more content cost-effectively. At the same time, they must deal with changes in how media is consumed and how it reaches audiences. And then there’s the global dimension. A video game developer, for example, may need to localize content in 16 different languages and coordinate disparate content-creation teams around the world.”

He stated that M&E companies are adopting new content-creation workflows that incorporate cloud tools and infrastructure. The workflow has become more centralised.

“Today, the drop in cable television subscriptions and the increase of viewers now on digital plays and mobile devices set the stage for greater cloud adoption. Another factor influencing cloud use includes businesses seeking more predictable cost models around content production and moving toward Opex-based approaches. Cloud plays really well into this.”

Talking about 5G, he said that having 200GB speeds on hand is going to be a boon for business owners, remote workers, and everyone else who enjoys the internet.

“5G is the freshly-unveiled mobile telecommunications standard that provides significant speed increases over existing 4G LTE networks. The speed increases are substantial, and that’s putting it mildly. To put that into a framework most can better understand, that is the difference between downloading an HD movie from Netflix to watch later in a matter of seconds, not minutes and this, in turn, will cause a huge consumption of HD Video and communications which highlight the increase in the relevance of data centers and cloud (which are also in data centers).”

He also said that data centers like Web Werks are best suited and geared for 5G as all that interconnectivity of IX and hundreds of directly connected ISPs and content providers serves as the foundation for content that moves on 5G networks. “Great networks and great storage both will be needed for 5G and the data center is at the heart of it all.”