What do the Grammy Museum, Corbis Images and Warner Brothers have in common? Much of the music, images and videos of these organisations are stored and maintained by US-based global information management services company Iron Mountain. The US government too is among the biggest users. Though Iron Mountain has facilities across the world, the main one is located 200 feet below a retired limestone mine across 200 acres on the outskirts of Pittsburgh.
As the world goes digital, the demand for data storage and retrieval of data facilities has shot up. In India too, demand has risen with the government's Digital India initiative. Iron Mountain set shop in India in 2013. Today, it has 2,600 customers in India across banking, insurance, FMCG, telecom and ITeS services. Almost 90 per cent of the India business is currently from the private sector. Hitesh Gupta, Managing Director, Iron Mountain-India says, "The demand for storage services has risen dramatically in emerging markets. Roughly half of the India business is accounted for BFSI, while manufacturing accounts for 30 per cent, telecom and FMCG account for 10 per cent each." Gupta sees demand to keep rising for such services in India.
Iron Mountain already has 18 million cubic feet of storage space in India spread across 75 facilities in 50 locations. This is largely in the big cities and state capitals. Gupta states that in the second half of 2018, India will get the first Iron Mountain data centre.
The gradual digitisation of data has started to have an impact in India. Gupta points out that digitisation has resulted in a sharp reduction in the cost incurred in transporting data from tier 2 cities to the big cities. Apart from record and data management, the company also does secured shredding of information. Though digitisation has increased in the emerging markets, yet 70 per cent of the business comes from the United States. The advantage that Iron Mountain offers is that while rentals are rising, companies can safely store their data without incurring huge costs.
As part of the Indian expansion strategy, Iron Mountain acquired OEC Records Management, providers of records management, imaging services and offsite storage of media. The acquisition will add 16 facilities across 10 locations, and a storage volume of 4 million cubic feet. It now has 73 facilities in 15 locations in India - including Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Pune, Ahmedabad as major centers- for delivery of records and information management, data management and secure destruction services to more than 2,600 customers.