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Global interconnection and data center firm Equinix has inked a new deal with the Oman Telecom Company (Omantel) to expand its footprint in the Middle East.

Per the deal, Equinix will develop a range of data center and interconnection services from its forthcoming network-dense data center near Oman’s capital city Muscat. The primary clientele the company wants to serve using this planned facility includes businesses, nonprofits, and government organizations in Oman and the rest of the Middle East.

The joint-venture between Omantel and Equinix will also see the birth of the first-of-its-kind carrier-neutral, world-class hub in the country that allows cloud providers, carriers, and content providers to co-locate their key IT infrastructure.

The deal puts the onus of operating and maintaining the forthcoming IBX data center, which will span over a huge area of 18,600 sq ft. There will be 750 cabinets at full-build, of which, 250 will be operational by Q2 of 2019.

“We are excited to work with Equinix on this project and accelerate how users experience cloud, content and next-gen communications. Today, data center infrastructure sits at the heart of global ICT and enables all of us to enjoy the cloud-based apps and services we use every day,” said Omantel CEO Talal Al Mamari.

He added: “The planned IBX data center with Equinix in Oman represents a massive step forward for Oman and the Middle Eastern ICT markets. Working on this project will allow both companies to bring together their strong assets and enable a new era of telecommunications both locally and globally. Such a partnership will further enhance Oman’s competitiveness in the global digital economy and trade,”

Both Equinix and Omantel will equally contribute $10 million to the equity fund powering the joint venture, whereas any additional funds required will be collected through debt financing. The joint venture company officially came into existence on June 27, 2018, a week after a consensus was reached on the shareholders agreement.