IBM commits $300 million to disaster recovery build-out

13 cloud storage centers to be built this year.

IBM is investing US$300 million to build 13 new data centers that will help customers around the world recover from disaster by storing their data remotely in a cloud-based storage model.

The data centers, to be built this year, will be spread worldwide in locations including Hong Kong, Tokyo, Paris, London, Beijing, Poland, Italy, New Jersey, Germany, Brazil, India and South Africa.

Stemming from IBM's acquisition of Arsenal Digital Solutions, IBM is calling the new facilities Business Resilience service delivery centers.

"The massive infrastructure expansion is the largest of its kind and will permit IBM clients to access services that support business continuity for the first time from a cloud computing environment," IBM states in an announcement released Wednesday. "Using the service delivery platform, clients will be able to take advantage of cloud computing capabilities by storing their business data in IBM's data protection vaults. ... Once the information is protected, customers will be able to immediately recover that information by restoring and retrieving it from a center directly to the client's business or to an alternative worksite recovery area in the event of a disaster."

IBM announced its acquisition of Arsenal last December. At the time of the acquisition, Arsenal's online storage-backup service was handling more than 20 petabytes of customer information in 67 data centers spread across five continents.

Arsenal's data protection technology has now been integrated with IBM's rack-mounted storage appliances, each of which can store multiple terabytes. Wednesday's announcement is the latest in a long line of cloud computing initiatives for IBM. In a separate project announced just a few weeks ago, IBM said it is spending $360 million on a single cloud-computing data center in North Carolina.

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