Tech Bloc’s meet-up Tuesday night, held in the Peer 1 Hosting offices at the Pearl complex, was overflowing with many who came to toast the company’s new brand as Cogeco Peer 1. However, “this is more than just rebranding,” said Luis Rodriguez of the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.
That’s because the Canada-based Cogeco Peer 1 has relaunched as an international cloud hosting and computing, data management, and IT infrastructure management company. The merger of Cogeco Data Services and Peer 1 Hosting has positioned the company to market its business to business services to mid-market companies with less than 1,000 employees. Cogeco Peer 1 provides these services to businesses specializing in online retail, financial services, technology, public sector, education, health care, business services, manufacturing, media, and online gaming.
“Cogeco Peer 1 has grown to fill this market,” Kimberly Ortega, U.S. and Latin America regional marketing coordinator for Cogeco Peer 1 said. “We have many major clients, including local ones such as CaptureRx and Xenex.”
Cogeco Peer 1 employs more than 600 people companywide, but its largest office in the U.S. is in San Antonio with 76 employees. The company is looking to hire 15-20 more people for this office, according to Rich Rivera, director of emerging verticals for Cogeco Peer 1.
Acquiring Peer 1 Hosting in December 2012 helped the Canadian-based internet infrastructure provider make a stronger push in the Canadian managed hosting market and grow its data center footprint. The acquisition is an example of a telecommunications company acquiring a data center service provider in hopes to boosting its revenue from cloud computing and other hosting services.
“With so many customers in Latin America the company could have chosen to focus on its presence in Miami,” Rodriguez said. “Instead, Cogeco Peer 1 decided to make San Antonio its flagship location.”
And the company is looking to strengthen its global footprint.
“With our extensive IT infrastructure assets and other services, we can offer companies working across multiple countries their own private IT connectivity for their transactions,” Rivera said. With more than 400 customers in Mexico and more in Colombia, Brazil, and across Latin America, the Canadian company has its eyes on expanding beyond its North American and European footholds.
“Our clients are forcing us to scale up, because they want IT infrastructure in places where they are doing business, such as Asia,” Rivera said. “With $6 billion in assets, Cogeco Peer 1 should have the resources to scale up its business model.”
With 20 data centers as well as more than 50 points-of-presence in North America and Europe, the company is poised for global expansion into Asian markets and beyond. Cogeco Peer 1 is intent on challenging major market competitors – including Rackspace.
Rackspace was one big reason why Peer 1 came to San Antonio. Rackspace launched ServerBeach in San Antonio in January 2003 as a lower-cost alternative for dedicated servers designed for technology hobbyists who want flexibility and reliability. Peer 1 Hosting purchased ServerBeach in October 2004 for $7.5 Million.
Tech Bloc’s CEO David Heard reminded many who gathered at the Tuesday event that Cogeco Peer 1’s story is one of a tech company’s growth that started from that local seed planted by Rackspace.
“It was ServerBeach that brought Peer 1 to San Antonio,” Heard said. “Now, Cogeco Pier 1 has grown into a tech company that’s poised for global growth – and its major operations center is here in San Antonio.”
Cogeco Peer 1 is hiring for its San Antonio location, including engineers, product developers, marketing, and sales.
“They’re contributing to the city’s tech talent pool with high paid tech jobs and technical training for employees even after they’ve been hired,” Heard said.
Heard also announced at the Tuesday event that Cogeco Peer 1 has become a sponsor of TechBloc, anchoring its commitment to growing the local tech community.
“Companies like Cogeco Peer 1 show how they can continue to evolve as fully invested members of San Antonio’s ecosystem,” Heard said. “We’re celebrating how this tech company decided to stay and contribute to our tech space.”