AirTrunk boss Robin Kudha says AI will require data centers ‘in the hundreds of megawatts’

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Highlighting the speed at which AI technology is being adopted, Tim Church, head of investment banking at Morgan Stanley Australia, told Summit ChatGPT that Netflix reached one million subscribers in six days, compared to Netflix, which took three years to reach the same milestone. .

Appearing alongside Mr Khuda on a panel discussing opportunities in alternative real estate assets, Chris Tynan, head of real estate at Blackstone Australia, said the amount of capital needed to support data center development around the world was “mind-blowing with the big five operators announcing $1 trillion in investment globally.

“And their ESG impact is going to become a meaningful conversation because they take, you know, the resources of a small town, obviously,” Mr. Tynan said.

Looking beyond data centers and AI, Queensland Investment Corporation chief executive Mr Tynan and Kylie Rampa agreed that real estate debt had emerged as a highly investable asset class given the high returns on offer.

Mr Tynan said it was a “golden moment for credit” with low double-digit returns on Blackstone’s deals, as the big banks returned to their exposure to sectors such as offices and created a gap in the market for loan funding. US.

Ms Rampa said QIC had recently launched a global lending platform focusing on infrastructure and multi-sector lending.

“We’ve had very strong interest and, correspondingly, very strong returns,” she said. “There will be huge opportunities in the next few years until the banks come back. But certainly where interest rates are, there is more attractive yield and even better demand for debt products (than equity). the world.”

Looking at other alternative asset investments, Ms Rampa said that as a “thematic investor”, QIC saw very good opportunities in sustainable agricultural assets, or “natural capital” as they are labeled.

Having recently launched a natural capital platform and one of Australia’s largest beef businesses and landowners – the North Australian Pastoral Company – Ms Rampa said QIC saw “really strong thematics” around agriculture from food security, land security and food production requirements. perspective

In addition, she said there was an opportunity to provide “stacked returns” from things like generating carbon credit units, overlapping operating returns and land assessment increases (cumulatively around 10 percent) with “very significant and attractive environmental returns.”

Ms Ramp said the market for Australian carbon credits would reach 60 million a year by 2030, up from about 1.1 million issued in July, as corporates and governments strive to meet net-zero emissions targets.

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