Singapore Telecommunications, known as Singtel, has joined forces with Nvidia to introduce artificial intelligence capabilities into its data centers located throughout Southeast Asia. Singtel’s Nxera initiative will see the establishment of energy-efficient data centers in the region. As part of this partnership, customers will gain access to Nvidia Hopper architecture GPUs and Nvidia AI reference architecture, both hosted on Nxera’s AI platform.
Nxera emerges from Singtel’s commitment to Singapore’s National AI Strategy 2.0, which calls for an expansion of the city-state’s computational infrastructure and the cultivation of a larger pool of AI experts. Nvidia has described these data centers as autonomous “AI factories,” primarily responsible for processing the private data of various entities, including companies, startups, educational institutions, and government bodies. Users will have the flexibility to operate their AI workloads across Singtel’s fixed broadband, submarine cable, and 5G networks within a multi-network and multi-cloud environment.
Singtel has also teamed up with several energy companies, including Thailand’s Gulf Energy Development, Indonesia’s Medco Power, and Malaysia’s TNB Renewables, to ensure its data centers achieve their net-zero emissions objectives by 2028. The initial AI services offered by Singtel will be based in Singapore, with plans for future data centers in Indonesia and Thailand. The construction of Singtel’s Singaporean facility, DC Tuas, commenced in August 2023, and it is scheduled to become operational in 2025. This eight-story facility, spanning 120,000 square feet, will provide an IT load capacity of 58MW, making it one of the largest data centers in the country. It will also be integrated with Singtel’s existing cable landing station.
Bill Chang, CEO of Nxera and Singtel’s Digital InfraCo unit, expressed that the launch of the Nxera data center brand is a significant milestone for their data center business, with plans to expand their footprint in the region beyond 200MW over the next three years. He emphasized the importance of democratizing AI access, incorporating renewable energy and sustainable technologies, and fostering talent development for their new generation of data centers.
In September 2023, investment firm KKR acquired a minority stake in Singtel’s data center unit, committing up to S$1.1 billion (~US$800 million) for a 20 percent stake in the regional data center business. Additionally, telecom companies in France, India, Italy, and Switzerland have recently announced their intentions to provide generative AI services with data sovereignty, often referred to as “AI factories.”