Established in 2001, CoreSite is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Carlyle Group, a global private equity
investment firm. CRG West develops, manages and operates 10 world-class data centers in 9 US markets, with a new 350k sq. f.t data center commencing construction in Santa Clara, CA. CoreSite combines extensive real estate development, data center construction, land acquisition, network planning, and IT operations experience. They manage over 100 Megawatts of emergency generator-backed power and two million square feet of first-class data center and colocation space for many of the world’s leading Fortune 500 companies, networks, universities and enterprises.
Situation – in 2002, CoreSite acquired 2 post dot com bust buildings which happened to contain technology infrastructure. The opportunities to lease the existing space and develop an additional few hundred square feet of data center space presented itself, so CoreSite started to build. Soon these buildings were primarily data center occupied space. Over time as CoreSite grew its data center development expertise and sales/utilization success, a strong growth plan was put together to capitalize on the growing market demands. Starting in 2006 and over the
next 18 months, CoreSite purchased 8 additional buildings, all of which are 90%+ data center infrastructure, the majority of which operate differently and disparately. In 2008, the company moved its headquarters from S CA to Denver, CO. It became evident a Data Center operations, reliability, and maintenance subject matter expert was required to lead the assurance of predictable uptime and the preparedness to scale as opportunities arise.
Dynamics – CFS Partners was initially engaged by the VP Real Estate and Facilities to discuss a VP Construction for CoreSite, primarily to focus on the new Santa Clara, CA data center and create construction standards for future development interests. Within 2 weeks, the VP RE and Facilities ‘sponsor’ shared that he was leaving the firm and referred us to the President. At this time, the focus turned to replacing the departing VP but the definition of the role was not clear. We visited CoreSite and enjoyed a discovery process resulting in the requirements for a more facilities (vs. real estate) focused executive with technical and financial reporting credentials was necessary to bridge the gap between a disparate reporting base and a centralized management structure in Denver. We proposed to present a broad slate of candidate so they could review internally the best level and capabilities to fit this organization’s requirements at the time.
Approach – Due to the sheer square footage of data center space under management, we knew that in order to identify a semi-qualified candidate that we would have to look nationally and that relocation was inherent in the search. So we mapped the largest Data Center REIT’s and largest corporate owned data center assets under management in the contiguous US and identified the name, title, phone, and emails for each of the Data Center Facility Managers and the Executive Managers they rolled up to. We identified the technical knowledge and financial reporting criteria that CoreSite required and benchmarked interested candidates experience and
capabilities against them. We identified, met, and presented 11 candidates from 7 different markets ranging from $110K base to $180K base.
Outcome – Ultimately, CoreSite met a data center maintenance and reliability focused candidate who was referred to them internally who struck them as an initial hire to ultimately report to the more executive management candidate profile that we conducted the search for. Two thirds of the fee was paid and we will revisit the search once Tom Ray feels it is appropriate. We ultimately learned the source of this referral and that it resulted from our market communication efforts. More important than chasing the final third of the fee is the future relationship with CoreSite and the ability to continue to assist with their growth. Tom Ray will provide a positive reference reflecting the value associated with this defining assignment and future interest in working together.
Thomas Ray – President & CEO (Principal @ The Carlyle Group)