IBM on Wednesday opened a central data center in Dublin, Ireland, to provide on-tap computing services to customers in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.
IBM also said it's expanding existing cloud computing centers in China, Vietnam, and the United States.
IBM is opening the Dublin cloud computing center in cooperation with the Industrial Development Agency of Ireland.
Micheál Martin, Ireland's trade and employment minister, said in a statement that the center will create 21 new jobs in Dublin. An IBM spokesman, however, said the figure is closer to 10 -- at least to begin with. "Future expansion is going to depend on the demand for services," said the IBM spokesman.
The spokesman declined to say how much IBM is investing in the facility.
"The selection of Ireland as the location for IBM's European hub for cloud computing highlights Ireland's role as an important contributor to IBM's global research, development, and innovation strategy," said Martin.
IBM plans to connect the Dublin center to a number of yet-to-be-built satellite centers around the region that will relay services to customers. The first customer for the center is Sogeti Group, a European provider of IT services.
Under a cloud computing scenario, businesses access applications and processing horsepower through high-speed data lines connected to a centralized hub that hosts servers and other hardware.
IBM has dubbed its cloud computing strategy Blue Cloud. The company has partnered with Google to develop a range of technologies designed to reduce costs and improve efficiencies for distributed computing.