Data centre drives Hull’s smart city plans

The city of Hull is hoping to accelerate its plan to become a leading smart city with a specially designed £5m data centre.

The centre is being built by local internet firm, Connexin, which has previously won a 10-year city centre wi-fi contract with Hull City Council.

When the facility opens in December it will create 60 new jobs including engineers, technicians, sales staff and event managers who will invite schools to use the space for learning about how the internet works.

Furqan Alamgir, Connexin CEO, said: “Hull is not hanging about in its race to become a smart city. Our investment is real, it’s happening and this state of the art data centre is proof of that. Hull is advancing technologically at pace and it’s a privilege to be part of it.”

Connexin has applied for planning permission with East Riding of Yorkshire Council to develop the facility on a 1.2-acre site at Bridgehead Business Park and has approached the Humber Local Enterprise Partnership’s funding programmes for support with the project costs. It will also be the home for Connexin’s headquarters, which will include a cafe, 50+ seat auditorium for presentations and screenings, and a world-class video conferencing suite.


Heading up smart cities

The data centre news follows the recent appointment of Sam Forster as Connexin’s Head of Smart Cities & Innovation, part of the company’s latest round of recruitment to scale up its leadership team following major investment in October 2017 led by Digital Alpha Advisors, in strategic partnership with Cisco Systems.

Upon on his decision to join the team, Sam said: “Connexin clearly has a passion for the future, challenging the status quo, and I’m thrilled for the opportunity to lead the creation and development of some of the most influential technology and business innovation waves shaping our lives today.”

Furqan Alamgir, Chief Executive Officer at Connexin, said: “Sam brings with him a wealth of experience, with a depth and breadth of understanding across smart tech, supply chain, mobile, RFID and internet technology. Also, his non-exec directorships of several start-ups equip him well as a key player to position Connexin at the forefront of smart technologies in UK cities.”

Sam has worked in IOT, M2M & Smart Tech, from subject matter expert to global consulting business leader, across multiple sectors for over 15 years, including Retail, Government, Automotive, Health, Life Sciences, FMCPG and Logistics.

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