Google Pouring Billions Into New Data Centers To Fuel AI And Cloud Growth: Here’s Where

Google is building new data centers to power its cloud and AI ambitions in locations from Kansas City and Northern Virigina to Mexico and Greece and more.

Google has committed to investing billions of dollars in 2024 in the U.S. and abroad to expand its rapidly growing data center footprint, which powers its cloud computing infrastructure and AI initiatives.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based tech giant said this month that it will build a $1 billion data center campus in Kansas City, Mo. The company is currently developing the campus and has committed to bringing its Skilled Trades And Readiness (STAR) program to Kansas City to help train the local community.

Google also has plans to build a new $576 million data center project in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

[Related: Google Cloud’s 5 New Offers For AWS, Azure And GenAI]

In addition, Google shell company Sharpless Enterprises recently unveiled plans to build a new data center campus in Northern Virigina, which is the region that houses the largest data center hub in the world located near Washington, D.C. The price tag for this data center campus is unknown. However, Google competitor Microsoft recently acquired a similar property nearby in Gainesville, Va., for $465 million with plans to build a data center campus.

Looking at future investments, Google has unveiled data center expansion or building plans in Mexico, Malaysia, Thailand, New Zealand, Greece, Norway, Austria and Sweden.

Google’s Data Center Investments Fuel ‘Big AI Ambitions:’ Sundar Pichai

Data centers power Google’s cloud infrastructure, cloud services and innovation engines, including its flagship Google Cloud Platform.

Google Cloud, the company’s cloud computing business, is currently on a $37 billion annual run rate. Google Cloud has been investing heavily in new AI and generative AI products that rely on and are powered by data centers.

“Our infrastructure is key to realizing our big AI ambitions. It’s a major differentiator for us,” said Google CEO Sundar Pichai during the company’s fourth-quarter 2023 earnings call in January. “We continue to invest responsibly in our data centers and compute to support this new wave of growth in AI-powered services for us and for our customers. Through this, we are being disciplined in how we run the company.”

Google’s data centers power the company’s global 40 Cloud Regions and 121 Cloud Zones available in over 200 countries and territories. Google’s data center footprint also has 187 network edge locations.

The company is the third largest cloud provider in the world, currently owning 11 percent of the global cloud infrastructure services market, according to IT research firm Synergy Research Group. Google Cloud generated sales of $9.2 billion in fourth-quarter 2023, up nearly 26 percent year over year.

Google Cloud Is Now Profitable

Last year was a turning point for Google Cloud in terms of profitability.

For years, Google Cloud was in the red due to the company investing billions each quarter to expand its global data center footprint. That changed in 2023 when Google Cloud reported a profit for the first time in its history in first-quarter 2023 by generating $191 million in operating income. For all of 2023, Google Cloud reported a profit each quarter. For example, in fourth-quarter 2023, the company’s operating income was $864 million compared with an operating loss of $186 million during the same quarter one year ago.