Powerhouse: Rebranded AREP Data Center Unit Expands Leadership Team

Powerhouse Data Centers is the new brand for the digital infrastructure business of American Real Estate Partners (AREP), which has brought on two senior executives to guide the company’s new data center projects in Northern Virginia.

AREP and investor Harrison Street plan to invest $1 billion to create new data centers across multiple sites in Loudoun County. Most notably, the joint venture  plans to redevelop the former AOL headquarters campus in Ashburn to create a 300-megawatt Powerhouse Pacific data center campus featuring four powered shells that can be customized for hyperscale tenants.

Powerhouse is developing two other campuses in Loudoun County as well. It is developing the Powerhouse ABX-1 data center project on Beaumeade Circle in Ashburn, and has acquired property in Arcola in the Dulles Cloud Corridor where it plans to build a two-building campus.

Expanding the Team With Industry Veterans

Appleby has successfully led strategic operations at several of the world’s leading digital infrastructure companies over the past 30 years. He was Chief Operating Officer of Digital Realty and Coresite Realty and Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) of Equinix. Currently, he is the CEO of Appleby Strategy Group, a digital infrastructure advisory group that works with leading private equity and technology companies. Appleby has also served as the Senior Advisor to the Blackstone Group for the last four years.

Kipfer brings more than 15 years of mission-critical experience leading dollar data center design and construction. Before joining AREP, he was Regional Director at Direct Line Global where he oversaw project management and operations for several of the world’s largest hyperscale data center sites. Kipfer was also Director of Construction at Markley Group where he managed design and construction for New England’s largest carrier hotel and data center facility.

“We are thrilled to welcome Luke and Jarrett to the PowerHouse Data Centers team, their expertise is a central differentiator from our competition,” said Doug Fleit, Co-founder and CEO of AREP. “This is an exciting time for PowerHouse. We intentionally brought them on at the beginning stages to be part of developing and establishing our custom solutions that empower hyperscalers with accelerated speed to market, robust connectivity and dedicated power while bypassing limited land and leasing challenges in Data Center Alley.”

The Powerhouse Data Centers logo at the company's construction site in Ashburn, Virginia. (Photo: Rich Miller)

The Powerhouse Data Centers logo at the company’s construction site in Ashburn, Virginia. (Photo: Rich Miller)

AREP was founded in 2003 and has acquired more than 17 million square feet of real estate totaling more than $4 billion in value. The company focuses on development in the Mid-Atlantic region, with a concentration of properties around Washington, D.C.

AREP has teamed with Harrison Street, which focuses on real estate in sectors like senior living, student housing and life sciences, but has recently stepped up its investments in the data center sector. In recent months, Harrison Street has teamed with 1547 Data Center Real Estate to acquire carrier hotel buildings in Milwaukee and Portland, Oregon.



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