The UK government announced a new data centre business which should save £105m in IT costs for the public sector over the next seven years.
The joint venture between the government and Ark Data Centres is called Crown Hosting Data Centres and, as a spokesperson for Ark Data Centres told V3, depending on the uptake of the data centre services, the venture could be worth between £50m and £700m for the SME.
Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude said the new business will establish a cross-government approach to buying server hosting space and will save taxpayers millions by harnessing the public-sector's combined purchasing power.
"As part of this government's long-term economic plan, we're determined to utilise our unique buying power and become a more intelligent customer," he said.
"It doesn't make sense for departments to host their servers in different ways and at different costs, and in the past Whitehall wasn't even sure how many of these centres there were.
"With this new joint venture, we will save millions and be able to access the necessary commercial and technical skills in the market to create a thriving new business that will deliver better services and allow government to share in its future success."
Crown Hosting Data Centres will offer the departments a 'pay for what you use' service instead of long-term contracts.
The Department for Work and Pensions, the Home Office, and the Highways Agency will be the first departments to make use of the new service, though it will be opened up to all of government and the wider public sector, V3 reports.