LLR Partners bullish on data center demand

'We are optimistic about the organic growth ahead of the company,' said Katie Lankalis, vice president at LLR Partners.

LLR Partners is doubling down on the growth of data centers by extending the geographic footprint of its portfolio company Salute Mission Critical, a global player in the sector.

The Philadelphia-based PE firm acquired Salute, a Franklin, Wisconsin-headquartered global data center provider in February 2021.

In November, Salute acquired AMS Helix, a UK-based digital infrastructure services provider that offers project management and sustainability services to data center and telecommunications customers in the EMEA region.

Earlier this month, Salute acquired New York-based Iconicx Critical Solutions, a provider of commissioning, testing and consulting services for data centers and mission-critical environments.

“We are very bullish on the growth of the data center space,” said Katie Lankalis, the vice president at LLR Partners. “We are optimistic about the organic growth ahead of the company.”

Extending geography is part of the strategy for growing Salute, a global data center services provider operating in about 11 countries across the world. Lankalis said the AMS Helix purchase will allow Salute to deepen its roots within the EMEA markets.

“It’s an opportunity for us to expand our local presence in the UK and accelerate our growth in the EMEA region more generally,” she said. “We have increasingly seen our customers invest in Europe and we are excited by the opportunity to strengthen our presence in that region.”

LLR had a proactive thesis around outsourced services to data centers that also recognized that the industry is large, highly attractive and has strong macro tailwinds, said Lankalis.

She said part of the demand is driven by the proliferation of connected devices, adoption of cloud solutions, and other factors that require additional data processing and storage capabilities.

In Salute, the LLR vice president said the firm is interested in building a lifecycle services business, from deployment and data center construction through ongoing operations, maintenance and decommissioning. “We aim to be the outsourced partner to the hyper-scalers, co-location providers, and enterprise data center customers.”

To achieve this, Lankalis said LLR will leverage skills set within the firm that will be helpful to Salute’s growth. “We have flexible, tailored, customized solutions to help operate data centers in the most efficient way possible.”

Even as the world economy is facing some challenges, Lankalis is upbeat about the feature.

“A lot of the growth is tied to data consumption, the usage of connected devices and the need for storage and so we continue to be bullish around data center capacity build-out over the next several years.”