Shoosmiths advises Edge on its sale to nLighten

September, 2023 - Milton Keynes, England

Shoosmiths has advised the shareholders of Edge Data Centres Holdings Limited (“Edge”) on the sale of the Edge Group, including its operating business, the Proximity Data Centres Group, to digital infrastructure platform nLighten.

In acquiring the Proximity Data Centre Group, nLighten will have obtained all 10 Proximity UK data centres and all employees in a transaction which will allow Proximity to sustain its impressive growth trajectory and be part of a larger network catering to clients across Europe.

Proximity is one of the UK’s fastest growing regional edge data centre companies, with centres based across the UK, including sites in Birmingham, Nottingham and Milton Keynes.

nLighten, a digital infrastructure platform funded by I Squared through its ISQ Global Infrastructure Fund III, already operates 10 data centres in Germany and recently expanded its footprint in France by acquiring Euclyde. With Proximity now under its umbrella, nLighten aims to cement its presence in three of Europe's most critical data centre markets.

Given the evolving standards for data sovereignty in Europe, nLighten plans to keep the operational management of its data centres in the country and places great emphasis on their identification with the UK market.

Shoosmiths has supported Proximity for several years, including on the acquisition of its data centres in Rugby, Birmingham and Milton Keynes.

Shoosmiths’ corporate partner Alistair Hammerton led on the deal, with support from real estate partner and data-centre specialist Liam Phillips, Dan Stamford, (senior associate) real estate, Mandeep Vryaparj, (associate) corporate. Sarah Buxton (legal director) tax and Michelle Morgan (principal associate) employment.

Alistair Hammerton said: “We were delighted to advise the shareholders of Edge, the owners of our long-term client Proximity Data Centres, on this strategically important sale.

“The transaction will see them consolidate their position as a leading UK data centre provider and now also cater for their clients to access services across Europe as well as continuing on an important period of exciting growth.”

John Craig, Proximity Finance Director said: “We were really fortunate to have the Shoosmiths’ team in our corner throughout this transaction and are delighted with the outcome, which is going to be transformative for the Proximity group going forwards. Big thanks to Al, Liam, Mandeep and the wider team for your support and wise counsel throughout – you are all a credit to Shoosmiths.”