The Lunar Group have made a big impact on the charity and blockchain sectors in 2022.

Lunar Group are now proud to launch Lunar Digital Solutions, trading as Lunar Digital – a provider of managed IT services that focus on delivering on business outcomes for our clients, actively delivering on challenges and priorities within their clients IT strategies.

So..who are the Lunar Group?

The Lunar Group is the name for the collection of businesses that sit within our group. The first business to form within the group was Lunar Green, incorporating in 2020 as an ethical investment business, led by seasoned entrepreneurs Robin Garbutt & Patrick Doyle.

Rob & Paddy, as they are more commonly known have built 2 data centres businesses over the last 20 years that they successfully exited to leading service providers via strategic acquisition. Their first business, UKGrid was a leading provider of colocation solutions that began shortly after the dotcom boom. When they started in 2004, many businesses were realising the benefit of protecting their critical IT infrastructure against major issues that would cause downtime to their growing businesses. The UKGrid facilities were located in Manchester Science Park, a highly connected hub in the heart of Manchester, delivering high power redundancy, efficient cooling and strong security, offering a perfect environment to clients who began to depend more and more on their IT hardware. UKGrid enabled the growth of some of the UK’s largest businesses.

When Telecity approached the UKGrid directors in 2011 to acquire their facilities, they did so on due to the strategic value of Manchester as a data centre hub and Northern Powerhouse, complementing their already impressive portfolio of facilities. Manchester continued to present itself as one of the most preferred locations to host infrastructure.

The directors of UKGrid saw the continued strategic value of operating data centres, as colocation began to take even more of a stronghold and became centric to businesses who wanted to ensure they were offering 24×7 across their services. Next, the leadership team turned to London, the capital of the UK and an already booming data centre hub, with leading facilities such as Telehouse North offering highly connected hosting options for businesses.

From this, London Data Exchange was born, known as LDeX. LDeX offered a flexible and independent approach to companies wanting to colocate their hardware outside of the Docklands hub, which was typically costly due to location. LDeX1, the businesses first facility, was opened in Brent Cross and was a purpose-built facility. LDeX1 grew rapidly, becoming yet again a hub for service providers who required resilient data centre space and businesses who continued to protect their important IT estate from major issues that were associated with on-prem hosting.

Experiencing fast growth, LDeX1 became a carrier hub, with many Tier1 & 2 ISPs seeing the value of installing a point of presence in the site. This continued to attract many clients who previously only had central & costly options for colocation. The LDeX1 facility allowed clients to notably reduce their hosting fees whilst not compromising on connectivity.

In 2015, the directors delivered on a plan that had been in their minds since opening LDeX1, to open a new facility where they had been so successfully previously, Manchester. By this time, Manchester had continued to become a highly strategic hub for carriers and data centre operators alike and was continuing to deliver on the Northern Powerhouse prophecy. LDeX2 was opened in the Summer and offered an independent option to the global operators that already had presence there. LDeX2 was highly successful and by 2018, three quarters of the available space had already been taken up. The adjacent facility in the same campus was branded as LDeX3. In 2018, the directors successfully exited LDeX via one of the largest UK based cloud operators.

Fast forward to 2020, the directors started Lunar Green, a business focussing on ethical investments. The Lunar Green mission is to use entrepreneurial expertise and experience to mentor and invest in ethical businesses.

Shortly after, Lunar Blockchain was born, the first ethical investment for the group. The goal is to conduct crypto currency hosting and mining using the most energy-efficient methods available, utilising green electricity to power and cool the mining equipment.

Next, Lunar Aid was created, a not-for-profit business that focusses on charity work and funding in a range of different areas. During the COVID outbreak in 2020, the Lunar Aid team raised tens of thousands of pounds for the NHS delivering Subway lunches to hardworking staff. When the war broke out in Ukraine, Lunar Aid provided logistical support to airlift Medical Air Ukraine’s emergency medical equipment to their medical distribution centres in East Poland utilising our network of voluntary commercial and private pilots.

The IT industry continued to resonate with the directors and in 2022, Lunar Digital was born – a managed IT services and data centre provider whose mission is to deliver transformational solutions to businesses, delivering a client experience that is uncommon in the industry. Mark Sedgley joined as MD, alongside Charlie Appleby who joined as CTO. Lunar Digital will open its first data centre in CY Q1 2023.

The Lunar Group are proud of our journey so far and are very excited to continue driving change across multiple sectors.