Airtel Africa has announced that it has began construction of its first data centre in Lagos, Nigeria.

Nxtra by Airtel is set to be one of the largest networks of data centres in Africa, with high-capacity data centres in major cities located strategically across Airtel Africa’s footprint.

The ground-breaking ceremony of the new data centre, situated on Lagos’s Victoria Island, was hosted by Airtel Africa’s outgoing Group Chief Executive Officer, Segun Ogunsanya and his successor, Sunil Taldar. The guests included Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu; Minister of Communications and Digital Economy, Dr. Bosun Tijani; Heads of Federal and State Ministries and Parastatals, and Members of the National and State Assemblies, among others.

Speaking during the event, Group Chief Executive Officer, Airtel Africa, Segun Ogunsanya, said the Nxtra project marks a significant milestone in the company’s journey and is a cornerstone of the organization’s growth strategy, with a particular focus on Nigeria, its largest market.

“We strongly believe that the establishment of Nxtra Data Centers will enhance data sovereignty, security, and preservation within the continent, reflecting our commitment to make Nigeria a major hub for access to digital services as we propel Africa towards a sustainable and inclusive digital age,” he said.

Mr Ogunsanya added that: “This mega project will provide over 1000 jobs. And more significantly, once deployed and at capacity, it will create over 250 permanent jobs for Nigerians whilst supporting companies in the manufacturing, financial services, health care as they move their data and computing into third party data centers like ours. Ultimately, we have to store data and content closer to where it is being consumed.”

The Nxtra by Airtel data centre in Lagos will deliver 38 megawatts of total power and host high density racks that integrate the latest best practice construction to achieve 1.3 power usage effectiveness (PUE). It is expected to be live by the first quarter of 2026.

The Lagos data centre facility will be the first of five hyperscale data centres to be developed by Airtel Africa on the continent. Combined, these data centres will offer a 180 megawatt capacity, distributed across 13 major data centre and over 48 edge data centres. Coupled with Airtel Africa’s extensive fibre footprint, Nxtra offers secure and scalable integrated solutions to global hyper-scalers, large African enterprises, startups, SMEs and governments.