Revenue and EBITDA up but profit down for NextDC in first half

Revenue for the data centre company sat at a little over AU$124 million for the 2021 half-year.

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Image: NextDC

Australian data centre company NextDC has reported underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) of AU$65.7 million for the first half of 2021, up from the AU$50.9 million it reported a year prior.

Operating cash flow increased by AU$44 million to just over AU$64 million and revenue also rose to AU$124 million, up from the AU$98 million reported in the first half of 2020. However, the company posted an overall loss of just over AU$17.5 million.

NextDC said the loss was primarily driven by higher depreciation, as well as significant one-off finance costs incurred in relation to its refinancing activities.

"NextDC has a clear strategy to differentiate its services through in-house engineering innovation and the adoption of new technologies in power and cooling systems," the company told shareholders on Thursday.

"Continued investments in internal systems and processes, with the ongoing implementation of online platforms to automate and integrate the management of the entire customer journey through the lifecycle of their data centre services with NextDC."

The company expects these investments to position it to "deliver significant customer benefits, reinforce market differentiation over the longer term, and deliver scalable growth, reducing operating costs and increasing revenue".

Data centre revenue accounted for AU$121.6 million of the total AU$124 million.

New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory pulled in AU$59 million of overall revenue, Victoria AU$39 million, Queensland contributed nearly AU$12 million in revenue, and Western Australia almost AU$10 million.

"Despite lockdowns and travel restrictions the company delivered its largest historical contracted build capacity for customers in 1H21," NextDC CEO and MD Craig Scroggie said. "Whilst COVID-19 has presented headwinds for many globally, it continues to be a positive catalyst for digital services and technology providers supported by our data centre platform."  

During the period, NextDC entered into a new AU$1.85 billion senior debt facility. It invested just shy of AU$182 million during the half-year to progress capital development projects, which included the addition of 4MW of capacity at Sydney's S2 data centre and 6MW at Melbourne's M2. The investment was also used in Perth for P2 and S3.

Work at S3 is on track for completion this time next year, while M3 has received council endorsement.

During the first half, the company generated new sales of 1MW to finish the period with contracted utilisation of 71MW, this is approximately 80% of installed capacity being contracted.

Customers increased by 101 from 30 June 2020 to 31 December 2020, totalling 1,465.

Throughout the period, NextDC also touted 100% uptime across its national data centre network.

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