Chinese Data Center 21Vianet To Receive US$150M Investment from Blackstone
21Vianet to use latest funds to reinforce its position in China’s data center market
By Monika Ghosh
21Vianet Group, Inc., a carrier and cloud-neutral Internet data center services provider in China, today announced that funds managed by Blackstone, one of the world’s leading investment firms, have agreed to make a US$150 million investment in the company.
Although the potential investment was announced on 21Vianet’s website, the company added that the closing of the deal and corresponding monetary transaction are still subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions.
As a result of this investment, Blackstone will become one of the Company’s largest institutional stockholders. Prior to this investment deal, Nasdaq-listed 21Vianet had secured $496 million in funding, according to Crunchbase data.
In February, 21Vianet raised $100 million through a convertible note purchase agreement with a group of investors led by Goldman Sachs Asia Strategic Pte. Ltd.
This investment will strengthen 21Vianet’s balance sheet and help support the rapid growth that the startup is experiencing in wholesale and enterprise data center markets, according to the statement. 21Vianet intends to use the latest funds for capital expenditure, to reinforce its position in China’s hyper growth data center market, the company said.
21Vianet provides web hosting and related services, cloud services, and business VPN services, aiming to improve the reliability, security and speed of its customers’ Internet infrastructure. Customers may locate their servers and networking equipment in 21Vianet’s data centers, connecting directly to China’s Internet backbone.
Founded in 2009, 21Vianet operates in more than 20 cities throughout China, servicing a diversified base of nearly 5,000 hosting and related enterprise customers that span numerous industries ranging from Internet companies to government entities and blue-chip enterprises to small- to mid-sized enterprises.
21Vianet Group claims to be the largest carrier-neutral Internet and data center service provider in China. It is the exclusive operator of Microsoft Azure and Office 365 services in China, and also houses data centers for IBM and others.
Josh Chen, Founder and Executive Chairman, 21Vianet said, “This investment is a valuable vote of confidence in the strategy being pursued by our team. Blackstone’s experience, connections and knowledge of the data center sector globally will help us embrace new infrastructure and digital transformation opportunities to better serve our customers.”
“China’s public cloud is experiencing exponential growth and 21Vianet is positioned to meaningfully accelerate its deployment of data center capacity,” said Jasvinder Khaira, Senior Managing Director, Tactical Opportunities at Blackstone.
“Josh and the management team have successfully built 21Vianet into one of China’s leading Internet data center operators,” said Kishore Moorjani, Senior Managing Director and Asia Head of Tactical Opportunities at Blackstone. “We have been impressed with their technical capabilities, focus, and deep customer relationships.”
21Vianet’s stock price spiked following the announcement of investment from Blackstone, reaching a 52-week high of $22 per share. At the time of writing, 21Vianet’s stock prices were up by 17.40%, at $21.52 per share.
According to the unaudited 2020 Q1 financial reports of 21Vianet, the company’s net revenues increased by 25.1% to $154.1 million, compared to the same period in 2019. Adjusted cash gross profit (non-GAAP) increased by 2.6% to $58.9 million, while adjusted cash gross margin (non-GAAP) was 38.2%, compared to 46.6% in the same period in 2019.
During the first quarter of 2020, we delivered solid financial and operating results despite the immediate challenges of the coronavirus pandemic,” Alvin Wang, Chief Executive Officer and President of 21Vianet said in an earlier statement.
“In the face of these near-term headwinds, our preventative measures and effective execution allowed us to operate our data centers without interruptions, report zero infection cases, maintain our cabinet delivery schedule, and promptly resume construction upon the virus’ containment,” he had added.
The company had benefited from the uptick in online education and cloud computing during the quarantine period, and says that all its projects have now resumed.
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