The South Australian Department of Transport, Energy and Infrastructure has received an exemption from the state's chief information office to buy hosting services worth millions of dollars from Adam Internet instead of from the existing panel.
According to Adam Internet managing director Scott Hicks, none of the providers on the panel (HP Enterprise services, Internode and Hostworks as at 19 October 2009) had any spare space. This had led to the department seeking the exemption.
Adam Internet has signed a five-year "multimillion" deal with the department which allows it to increase its space needs as time progresses.
The internet provider has recently built its own new datacentre to deal with the lack of datacentre space in Adelaide, which Hicks said was "rare as hens' teeth". The datacentre has 3000 square metres of space. Stage one has 180 racks, half of which is reserved for government, with the other half earmarked for commercial ventures. Stage two comprises of another 180 racks, which Hicks had thought the company would power up towards the end of the year, but now believed would occur earlier.
He said that other departments had also received exemptions from the CIO office, which meant they would also be on the market for space. "I don't think that this will be the last," he said.
Hicks believed there wasn't anywhere else for the departments to go, not being able to think of any providers who had a surfeit of space available. "As far as I'm aware, there's not much change at the moment for the Adelaide market," he said.
The government put out an expressions of interest request last September asking for parties to "augment" the hosting panel which Adam Internet responded to.
Hicks is taking the CIO office's approval of the Department of Transport's contract with Adam Internet as a sign that it will find a place on the panel after the formalities are over.