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Industry Analysis: Data Centers

This report analyzes Montana’s current data center industry assets and the state’s ability to further develop this growing industry. Our Regions businesses are following market trends and have been using or plan to use third parties service providers for more of their IT compute and data storage needs. Many SMB’s find cloud offerings and help from Managed Service Providers to be a cost effective way to conduct business while keeping IT spending in check. Midlevel Enterprises understand the benefits of collocating their IT Environments to be more cost effective while mitigating risk and to provide better service as opposed to in-house operations. In Montana, there are a surprising number of businesses currently using out of state data management services; they were either in need of these services some time ago or simply were not aware of our ability to service their needs in state. These businesses provide a strong market for data centers, cloud providers and technical services within the state. Some businesses however, are not yet comfortable having their hardware, IT personnel, and data off-site, This market is sure to increase as business owners gain trust in local service providers; this report outlines avenues to encourage such in-state development.

Montana’s climate is low risk for natural disasters and other hazards and has a favorable tax environment. This makes Montana a feasible location for large, single tenant data centers. Companies that generate vast amounts of data have the need to build very large, efficient data centers. While Montana has some qualities that are attractive (no sales tax, available land, etc.) to these types of developments, the industry has also identified some weaknesses (lack of data management trained workforce, etc.) that the state must work to overcome in order to be a top competitor for these large installations. This report outlines possible avenues to increase the state’s attractiveness to data center development.

This report provides a basic analysis of the data center industry and its potential for growth in the state. The information gathered here is intended to allow the Governor, the Chief Business Development Officer, and the Director of the Department of Commerce to determine which state efforts should be pursued to expand this industry in the State of Montana.

Read the Full Report Here

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