by Tom Tuite

Worldport is now focusing on the delivery of Internet technologies to the European market through a new $70m supercentre in Blanchardstown. The company said that the supercentre, which will go live on October 2, has the power capacity of Dublin airport. Through it Worldport intends to provide a managed Web hosting service portfolio, co-location services, Internet connectivity, back-ups and disaster recovery. One of the major reasons that Worldport chose to use Ireland as a gateway to Europe is because it is much easier to set up a facility here. In the UK and in European cities such as Amsterdam there are difficulties in obtaining sufficient power to run their installation.

"Ireland is the gateway to Europe and the Government has put forth a effort to provide connectivity; it also has a commitment to e-commerce. It is also the software development capital of the world," James L Martin, Worldport Chief Technology Officer, said at a briefing on Wednesday. Worldport intends to provide Web hosting space for ASP and ISPs; it will also offer components for clients. "Hardware has a lifecycle of 18 months, after that it is obsolete, as in most applications there is no recycle program. We have worked with three providers to put Worldport into their services to recycle their programs," he said.

When Worldport goes live, it will have facilities occupying 20,000 square feet dedicated to Web hosting. It is believed that it will increase this to 50,000 square feet by the start of November. In the US the company has 3,500 clients, many of which it intends to bring to the Blanchardstown plant. In the initial stages of this development it will have 150 clients. The supercentre was constructed by Silks and the majority of labour employed in the construction was from Ireland.