In the latest episode of Nomad Futurist, Founder and Managing Director of Structure Research, Philbert Shih, shares with Nabeel Mahmood and Phillip Koblence a wealth of insights and reflections spanning his extensive career in the data center sector. From entrepreneurial beginnings to navigating industry shifts and embracing digital transformation, Shih’s journey offers invaluable lessons for professionals in the tech industry.

Reflecting on his early days in the dot-com era, Shih highlighted the pivotal moments that shaped his career trajectory:

“Tech journalism, or stories and articles about this burgeoning, emerging, new, exciting technology platform called the internet that is the next industrial revolution. And I thought, wow, okay, that resonates. That makes sense in terms of opportunity and career path.”

Shih elaborates on the evolution of the data center landscape, emphasizing the impact of major events and technological advancements:

“The first phase – the dot com, kind of, empty data centers – gave rise to a lot of smart people and fortunate people to get into the sector… Get assets with pennies on the dollars, build those assets over time, monetize them, and continue to help drive sectors, growth, [etc.].”

Later addressing the sector’s response to the global pandemic, Shih underscores the acceleration of digital transformation and its implications for future trends:

“The global pandemic gave rise very quickly to the accelerated adoption of computing… That’s why our branding is all about – our event is called – infra/STRUCTURE. It’s called Structure Research because the physical infrastructure is always going to need to be there.”

Phil Shih’s journey from entrepreneurial beginnings to industry leadership offers a compelling narrative of resilience, adaptation, and innovation within the data center industry. His reflections on past experiences, current challenges, and future trends provide invaluable insights for industry professionals navigating an increasingly complex and dynamic landscape. As the sector continues to evolve, Shih’s vision for the future underscores the critical role of technology, infrastructure, and human connections in shaping the digital economy of tomorrow.

Connect with Phil Shih on LinkedIn to stay up to date on Structure Research and infra/STRUCTURE Summit 2024, taking place at the Wynn Las Vegas.

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