Citigroup closes 50 data centers

Efficiency gains reduce costs at consolidated data centers

Since the 2008 financial meltdown, Citigroup has been taking a closer look at its operations, and as part of the process it has consolidated data centers across the globe. Five years ago, the company had 70 data centers and now it's down to 20, reports Greg MacSweeney at Wall Street & Technology.

To eliminate 50 data centers, Citigroup started by reviewing them all and looking at the company's current and future business needs. A number of older centers, as well as some brought along with acquisitions, were closed. At the same time it was closing dozens of facilities, the company built eight new, highly efficient ones.

All of Citi's data center servers--40,000 of them--are virtualized, and the network operates at much higher capacity, MacSweeney reports. Storage utilization has risen to 60 percent today from 10 percent a few years ago.The cost of data centers has dropped with efficiency gains, according to Citigroup. At the same time, the added efficiency allows the company to spend more of its IT budget on application development and less on infrastructure and maintenance.

One technology Citigroup has not embraced is the public cloud, in part because the company operates its own private cloud and doesn't see external cloud offerings as promising much in the way of flexibility or costs savings. What's more, company executives remain concerned that external cloud offerings wouldn't be up to snuff in terms of the company's data privacy requirements and other compliance obligations.

For more:
- see Greg MacSweeney's article at Wall Street & Technology

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