Transformational pan-African data center operator Open Access Data Centers (OADC) announced the appointment of African data center industry leader Dr Ayotunde Coker as its Chief Executive Officer (CEO) with immediate effect.
Under his leadership, OADC will support and accelerate Africa’s digital transformation by constructing and operating a pan-African network of world-class, client-centric, Tier III certified data centers. In addition, OADC will develop a unique core-to-edge open-access edge data center ecosystem, comprising hyperscale, regional and OADC Edge DCs.
Nigerian born Dr Coker brings with him more than 35 years of international experience across Europe, the USA, Asia and Africa. For the last eight years he has been CEO and Managing Director of Rack Center, making it a household name in West Africa and a leading data center brand in all of Africa, with global recognition and numerous international awards. Prior to that, Dr Coker worked as MD/CEO of Emerging Markets Payments West Africa, establishing the business as a top brand in its market, and before that as Group CIO of Access Bank. His distinguished 28-year career in the UK included roles at Ford, Cap Gemini, eMCSaatchi UK, Egg Bank, British Petroleum and the UK Ministry of Justice.
Dr Coker earned a Shell sponsored Mechanical Engineering degree at University of South Wales and is a Ford of Europe sponsored post graduate alumni of Cranfield University. The latter presented him with its Distinguished Alumni Award in 2020. He has served as Chair of the UK Government Enterprise Architecture Board and is current President of the Africa Data Centers Association. Dr Coker holds numerous business leadership awards.
Commenting on his appointment, Dr Coker said, “This is a dynamic period for businesses in Africa, with transformation driving rapid expansion of the continent’s digital infrastructure. I am excited to be joining OADC, which is set to play a huge role in establishing and growing the pan-African digital infrastructure and cloud ecosystem that will underpin this expansion – supporting cloud operators, content providers, the wholesale community and major enterprises in extending their reach and operations across the continent. I am delighted to be leading OADC in transforming Africa’s digital capabilities, driving its deployment of a network and vibrant ecosystems of world-class, open-access digital infrastructure at strategic interconnection points throughout the continent. An opportunity for Africa to leapfrog the world.”
Chris Wood, WIOCC Group CEO, added, “I am absolutely delighted to welcome Tunde as CEO of Open Access Data Centers at this critical period in the company’s development. Having secured $200m in funding at the end of 2021, we are now engaged in transforming Africa’s digital infrastructure with the most extensive deployment ever in Africa of open-access national, regional and edge data centers. Tunde’s depth and breadth of experience and leadership, together with his stature and contacts in the African data center industry will, I’m sure, be instrumental in ensuring the company’s success.“
Dr Coker has elected to be based in Lagos, Nigeria, a central geographical location in Africa and the location of OADC’s newest Tier III open-access data center, the largest data center campus in West Africa.