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NPCI to set up a data center in Hyderabad

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National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI), an umbrella organization for operating retail payments and settlement systems in India, is setting up a data center in Hyderabad. It will have a capacity of 250 racks but can be scaled up to 500 racks gradually. NPCI provides services like cheque clearance and facilitates digital payments.

“We are building a smart data center with the latest technology at Hyderabad for our own requirements. The capacity would be 250 racks and expandable to 500 racks. Already, the land is acquired through Telangana Government,” said Rajendran N, chief technology officer, NPCI.

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NPCI has invited bids for selection of liaisoning consultant (LC) to acquire various end-to-end statutory permissions for construction of captive data centers (CDC) in Chennai and Hyderabad, said a report earlier.

“Presence of larger number of technology institutes and availability of talent are the main reasons for us to choose Hyderabad,” he said.

For the full financial year 2018-19, the number of transactions on the NPCI platform stood at 1,706.5 crores and their value in rupee terms was put at Rs 13,674.9 lakh crore. In addition, non-financial transactions also happen on the platform. There were 790.6 crore such transactions, according to data put out on its portal.

“We are currently operating from outsourced data centres. The proposed Hyderabad data centre will be our own data centre. This will be our first one. We will be hosing all our system on that. It is a two-year project,” said Rajendran.

Last week, Flipkart, the largest online marketplace e-commerce player in the country, announced the launch of its second data centre in Hyderabad. Its first one is in Chennai.

NPCI Tier-4

The Tier-4 rated facility was built in partnership with city-based data centre player CtrlS. A Tier 4 data centre means it will be available 99.995 per cent of the time. In other words, it could be down for just 26.2 minutes a year. A Tier 3 data centre will be available for 99.982 per cent of the time or could be down for 1.6 hours per year. Even though the values look similar and the downtime small, they matter in the real time service delivery.

Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, IT and Industries, said: “Telangana was the first State to come out with a dedicated policy on data centres. We are seeing encouraging results. NPCI choosing Hyderabad reinforces the advantages Hyderabad offers to companies who wish to set up data centers”.

BS Rao, Vice President, Marketing, CtrlS Datacentre, said that CtrlS is coming up with 2 million sqft hyper-scale Tier-4 data centre in Hyderabad. “Hyderabad falls under seismic zone 2 (safe), has a large talent pool, high quality infrastructure, fiber-based bandwidth and 24X7 power,” he said about the factors that augur well for the data centre sector.

In addition, the Telangana State Data Centre policy offers power incentives, land at subsidized rates and reimbursement of internet charges. “The State has declared data centres as essential services and are excluded from statutory power cuts,” Rao explained on why Hyderabad is suitable for data centre business.

Flipkart apart, STT Telemedia and CtrlS already have data centers in Hyderabad. A data center with about 250 racke and expandable to 500 will cost about Rs 60-100 crore with actual investment varying with land cost, security practices, and specifications, said industry people.

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