Sabancı Holding Digital Group President Max Speur: “The pathway to digital scalability traverses through AI infrastructure”

25-03-2024

Recognizing digital and artificial intelligence (AI) transformation as one of its 5 strategic priorities, Sabancı Group continues to be a stalwart representative of the Turkish business community in international platforms. Max Speur, Sabancı Holding Digital Group President, participated in the Annual Business Innovation Summit organized by The Economist, one of the world's leading publishing groups, in London, UK, under the theme "Harnessing Artificial Intelligence: From Fear to Fortune." Speaking on the panel titled "Pioneers of Data: Harnessing Business-Generated Data to Power Artificial Intelligence" Max Speur addressed the importance of data quality and accessibility, emphasizing the necessity of infrastructure for running artificial intelligence models.

Stating that data has become the new raw material in today's world, Max Speur remarked: “However, for digital transformation to be effectively implemented, environmental variables and outside factors are as important as data quality. There's a common saying: 'Data is the new oil.' While this phrase may accurately describe the value of data, it's not sufficient on its own. Just like you can power a car with oil, you need the right logistics, operations, and delivery infrastructure for that car to go where you want."

Max Speur, highlighting that the business world has undergone a significant transformation in its focus on artificial intelligence in recent years, said, "This transformation, while bringing about significant technological advancements, also raises serious questions about resource utilization. Today, we need to conduct studies in this field with the question, 'Do we have the necessary infrastructure and capabilities to effectively run artificial intelligence models?' Artificial intelligence requires significant computing power, storage capacity and energy. However, infrastructure services encompassing cloud technologies and data centers fall far short of meeting the demand in the medium term. Therefore, significant infrastructure investments are deemed crucial for digital transformation focused on artificial intelligence."

“GLOBAL SCALE REQUIRES AN ADDITIONAL CAPACITY OF 38 GW"

Max Speur continued: “According to scientific researches, an additional capacity of 38 GW will be needed in the near future to accommodate the additional loads brought by artificial intelligence models. However, neither the data center industry nor corporate companies have made significant investments in this direction. One of the main reasons for Sabancı's focus on this area is precisely this. Here, we can talk about a dual set of objectives. Firstly, we see an opportunity for scalability. We believe that these investments reflect Sabancı's vision of becoming a developer of future technologies and are in line with our digital perspective. On the other hand, we also believe that cloud technologies, scalable digital technology platforms and green hyperscale data centers will be the main drivers of green transformation worldwide. This transformation is at the very heart of our Group Promise. Moreover, the pathway to truly embedding digitalization into our business culture, creating digital enterprises and permanently eliminating silos also lies in these investments."