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Google invests 1 billion euros in Germany’s digital future

In September 2001, the first-ever German Google employee switched on their computer in Hamburg. Since then, we’ve grown to more than 2,500 employees in four offices across Germany. Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich have long been our home, and we continue to invest in the growth of the local economy.

Today, 20 years after the start of “Google Germany”, we are pleased to present one of our most important investment programs to date in this country. With the expansion of our Cloud Region in Frankfurt in a new Google-owned Hanau facility, a new Google Cloud region in Berlin-Brandenburg, and a broad investment plan in renewable energy, our commitment is clear: Google is investing in Germany’s potential and supporting the transition to a digital and sustainable economy. Between now (2021) and 2030, this investment in digital infrastructure and clean energy will total approximately 1 billion euros.

Expanding our Frankfurt cloud region to support growing demand from German businesses and organizations

In Hanau, only 20 kilometers from the DE-CIX Internet hub in Frankfurt, Google is proud to be nearing completion of an additional cloud facility that will be fully operational in 2022. This expansion of our existing Frankfurt Google Cloud region will serve the growing demand for Google Cloud services in Germany.

The 4-story building is ​​10,000 square meters and was sustainably constructed with energy efficient infrastructure and adherence to our circular economy model for waste. The symbolic handover of the keys from developer NDC-Garbe, together with local government officials, took place on site yesterday. 

A new cloud region in Berlin-Brandenburg

In addition to the Hanau expansion of our Google Cloud region in Frankfurt, we are pleased to announce that a new Google Cloud region will be located in Berlin-Brandenburg, further extending our ability to meet growing demand for cloud services in the country. When open, this will be our second Google Cloud region in Germany, providing enterprise customers with faster access to secure infrastructure, smart analytics tools and an open platform. Designed and dedicated to providing enterprise services and products for Google Cloud customers of all sizes and industries in Germany, the Berlin-Brandenburg region will have three zones to protect against service disruptions and join the existing network of 27 Google Cloud regions connected via our high-performance network. 

One of the cleanest clouds in the industry becomes even cleaner

Since 2017, Google has matched 100% of our global, annual electricity use with renewable energy. Last year, we set out to run our business on carbon-free energy everywhere and at all times by 2030, enabling us to offer cloud customers one of the cleanest clouds in the industry, while helping Europe achieve its ambitious climate goals.

Today, we’re excited to announce that ENGIE Deutschland has been selected as Google’s carbon-free energy supplier in Germany. Under the terms of the agreement, ENGIE will assemble and develop, on Google’s behalf, a 140 megawatt (MW) carbon-free energy portfolio in Germany that has the ability to flex and grow with us as our needs change. This includes a new 39MW solar Photovoltaic system, and 22 wind parks in five federal states that will see their lives extended so they continue to produce electricity instead of being dismantled. This portfolio will ensure that the energy delivered to Google’s German facilities will be nearly 80% carbon-free by 2022 whenmeasured on an hourly basis. This is a first but important step on Google’s journey to reach our goal of full electricity decarbonization by 2030. 

This is the first energy supply of its kind in Europe, with a focus on sourcing carbon-free energy for every hour of Google’s operations. Not only will this new agreement draw the roadmap for the industry and more 24/7 carbon-free energy contracts in Europe, but it provides our cloud customers with two more regions where they can lower their carbon footprint. And importantly, by working with our energy suppliers to transform how clean energy is delivered to customers, Google is supporting the broader decarbonization of the German electricity grid.

What customers and partners are saying

As companies continue to grapple with changing customer demands, technology has played a critical role, and we’ve been fortunate to partner with and serve people, companies, and government institutions in Germany and around the world to help them adapt. The Google Cloud region in Berlin-Brandenburg and the expansion of our Google Cloud region in Hanau will help our customers — such as BMG, Delivery Hero, and Deutsche Bank — adapt to new requirements, new opportunities and new ways of working. 

“We are very pleased about the symbolic handover of the keys to the building here in Hanau to Google Cloud,” said Hanau Mayor Claus Kaminsky. “With Google, we have a strong partner at our side who is supporting us in setting up Hanau’s economic future, both digitally and sustainably. The data center facility of Google Cloud embodies this transformation: We bring the cloud to us in Hanau and thus support the digital transformation of companies and public authorities. Not only in our city and Hesse, but throughout Germany and Europe. The new building meets high sustainability standards and the clean energy initiative presented today by Google is in line with our aspirations for sustainable digitalization.”

“Sustainability is a central pillar of Deutsche Bank’s strategy and we have made strong public commitments to be part of the solution,” said Bernd Leukert, Chief Technology, Data and Innovation Officer and Member of the Management Board at Deutsche Bank. “We welcome the new Google Cloud region in Germany, which will enable us to deliver additional resilience and performance for our German client base.”

Ralf Bernhard, Senior Originator Renewables, ENGIE, said: “ENGIE is excited to collaborate with Google based on a first-of-a-kind agreement which will support the company with its sustainability goals and ambitious carbon-free energy target. Thanks to our expertise in energy and risk management, we can seamlessly integrate renewable energy from existing plants and develop new assets to design a tailor made product that meets Google’s needs and plans to go even greener.”

20 years since Google first touched down in Germany, our commitment to helping Germany continue to lead in technical innovation is stronger than ever. We are excited to continue working with our partners in Hesse, Berlin and Brandenburg and across Germany to advance infrastructure and clean energy projects, help accelerate digital transformation, and secure a sustainable future for German and European companies and organizations.

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