Report: Sears May Convert Some Auto Centers into Data Centers
November 15, 2013 9:52 AM
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(Source: Datacenter Knowledge)
Sears says it could move fast if it decides data centers are the way to go
U.S. retailer Sears has a number of locations spread across the country in malls, and also has a sizeable number of standalone locations. Many of those locations have automotive service centers attached.
A new report indicates that Ubiquity Critical Environments, which is the data center unit of Sears Holdings, is currently considering a plan to convert some of its Sears Auto Centers into data centers.
Ubiquity is reportedly currently working with Schneider Electric on a proposal to build and operate mission-critical facilities in a number of markets around the country. Snyder Electric is a provider of data center equipment and services in the U.S.
Initially the exploration looked at converting old Sears and Kmart retail stores and warehouses into large data centers. However, it turned out that many of the promising locations were located near data center hubs that would have Ubiquity competing with existing providers.
Rather than competing head-to-head with the existing providers, Ubiquity changed its focus to look at converting smaller footprint locations in secondary markets. Sears believes that existing Auto Centers would be ideal for that strategy, especially stand-alone locations.
Sears has over 50 stand-alone automotive service center facilities typically located on the perimeter of shopping malls. Many of these locations are between 25,000 and 50,000 ft.² and have ceiling heights of around 16 feet. Ubiquity wants to convert some of these locations into data centers with between 1.2 MW and 2.4 MW of IT capacity.
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auto centers closed
11/15/2013 6:05:58 PM
Some years ago some states forced Sears to shut down their auto services centers in those states because they were found to be excessively and routinely overcharging the customers.
I used to go to a Sears auto center at a mall in Indiana on a annual basis for an alignment. This was one of the ones shut down. That Sears is still there, and the auto service center is still closed.
Perhaps Sears is hoping to gouge the data center customers in a similar fashion.
RE: auto centers closed
11/22/2013 1:46:52 PM
I live in Evansville, and out auto center is still open but I will never return. They charged me for a new brake pad, rotor, the whole nine yards on all 4 tires. Few months later, if that, brakes were going out again on at least one tire. Took it to a different shop this time, and they asked how long it had been since the brakes were fixed. When I told them it was a few months back, if that, they said Sears lied about the repair work on 1 or 2 tires.
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