Data Center POST had the chance to engage with Derek Garnier, CEO of Evocative, a seasoned veteran with 35 years of experience in the digital infrastructure industry. Garnier has a wealth of expertise in corporate strategy having successfully built, operated, and sold multiple companies. His personal and business philosophy is the same – to lead responsibly, empower those around you, and strive for the best outcome for all involved. With this guiding motto, Garnier’s insights ahead of the PTC’24 conference make this interview a must-read.
Data Center Post (DCP) Question: PTC’s Annual Conference is a strategic springboard for the global communications industry, and this year is no different. How is your business addressing AI needs, keeping in mind the upcoming rules and risks associated with AI?
Derek Garnier (DG) Answer: Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) are increasingly foundational technologies for business operations and are becoming commonplace in work and everyday life. Colocation customers who are integrating these technologies have increasing capacity needs and data center operators must innovate and develop new strategies to align with these greater capacity and power requirements. Many of our customers have implemented AI applications for real-time analysis of large quantities of data. This contributes to improved automation and operational efficiency. However, large power and cooling demands posed by higher-density data processing challenge the industry to evolve to better accommodate the present and future needs of AI applications.
At Evocative, we are developing new ways to accommodate AI and ML for our customers, and we are applying these technologies to improve our own operational efficiencies. As a data center operator, Evocative can take advantage of the benefits of AI applications, including physical security, energy and capacity management, automation, and customer support.
DCP Q: At PTC’24 there will be a few sessions focusing on the status and opportunities in the telecom market. From telecom equipment, services, and wireless communication, which area of the industry does your company focus on, and where do you see the industry heading in the next 5-10 years?
DG A: Unpredictable costs and limitations in managing large-scale workloads, such as those required for AI, have emerged as challenges for many companies. As such, bare metal and hybrid cloud models are major focuses of our business as we move into 2024. We recently announced Evocative Metal, an enterprise-grade bare metal solution, that provides a customizable and cost-predictive platform made to evolve how we think about hybrid cloud infrastructure. Our solution combines the benefits and speed of the public cloud with the security, cost-effectiveness, and control of on-premises solutions to create an optimized configuration for the next generation of workload management. As cloud repatriation takes its course, we expect hybrid models to quickly become the dominant cloud infrastructure choice. Today, operators are already adapting, and they will continue to do so.
DCP Q: At PTC’24, on January 23, 2024, the Infrastructure Builders panel will discuss how the world will look in 2033 (10 years), when we are one-third of the way through the digital century. How are you approaching projects and planning for future growth with the shifting utilization of digital infrastructure?
DG A: AI and ML applications become central to business operations, at Evocative we’re planning for increasing power and cooling requirements through 2024. Power and cooling demands also pose challenges to the industry’s sustainability initiatives. Many markets are already experiencing constraints when sourcing power, so increased power requirements could cause more difficulties in dense regions. Many enterprises and data center operators have comprehensive sustainability initiatives already underway which demand continued innovation. We expect ESG investment to rapidly expand to not only improve the efficiency of existing technologies but also drive the creation of next-gen technologies that help achieve sustainability goals. While sustainability initiatives often take time and investment to realize, over the next decade we expect that these investments will be more commonplace, marking an important milestone for the industry as it increasingly prioritizes the greater social good with its operational conventions.
DCP Q: What core markets do you operate in and what are the key opportunities / challenges in these markets and how are you adapting to address them?
DG A: Through our data center, network, and bare metal services, Evocative is built for enterprise and relevant to all industries. But today’s enterprises are encountering cost unpredictability, risk of vendor lock-in, and new compliance and governance requirements associated with the cloud.
At the same time, going 100% on-premises has its drawbacks for the enterprise segment. Over the past few years, according to the Uptime Institute, data center costs have continued to rise as a result of global supply chain issues and related expenses such as labor, capital, power, and staffing.
To address these concerns, Evocative has bolstered our portfolio to accommodate hybrid IT. Our colocation and bare metal solutions provide scalable infrastructure that reduces the total cost of ownership. Our interconnection and cloud on-ramp solutions enable hybrid multicloud deployments and computing at the edge. Evocative is committed to driving your business forward, now and in the decades to come.
DCP Q: PTC’24 is the 46th annual PTC Conference. During this four-day event, how can people meet or learn more about you (or after PTC’24)?
DG A: We’re excited to meet new people across the industry and are scheduling as many meetings at PTC’24 as possible. If you’d like to meet with Evocative, please feel free to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be happy to find time at the event!
To learn more about PTC’24, please visit: www.ptc.org/ptc24. The event takes place January 21-24, 2024 in Honolulu, HI – registration is still open for those interested in attending.
To meet with Evocative at PTC’24 you can request a meeting email at email@example.com.
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