Cryptocurrency mining has grown into big business, and Fortune reports that it could now be the most profitable industry in the world – outperforming traditional leaders like big pharma and software providers.

Thanks to Russel Bruno and Ace Host, the Tampa Bay area boasts a leader in its fast-growing industry.

Bruno is the CEO of Ace Host, a Tampa-based data center provider. Ace Host operates both a traditional data center with the added capacity of crypto mining and an autonomous facility fully dedicated to mining. A data center houses computer hardware and equipment needed to connect to networks. At its core, data centers provide businesses with three basic things that they need to meet their computing needs: power, connectivity, and cooling.

“We have been in the mining industry for eight years now,” said Bruno. “We have been doing this for a long time and understand the crypto space and the mining space very well.”

Data centers are also mission-critical facilities – they are expected to remain secure and operational at all times, even during an event that would otherwise cause widespread disruption. Zero tolerance for downtime means multiple power sources and connections to a broader network infrastructure are critical, and Ace Host guarantees 99.9% availability.

These different properties also make data centers uniquely suitable for crypto mining.

“I can get them (miners) up and running right away,” says Bruno. “So it can be applied to everyone.

“Everyone is obsessed with mining. Everyone wants to make money. “

In addition to mining himself, Bruno uses his facilities to run mining operations for other companies and individuals. Interested parties can fill out a small form online and receive a free quote for colocation services, depending on which equipment is required and which coins they want to mine.

Colocation data centers enable miners to put their machines online immediately with low up-front costs. In addition to the redundancies of critical infrastructure and security measures, Ace Host’s autonomous facility in downtown Tampa is also rated for a Category 4 hurricane.

With the spread of blockchain technology and cryptocurrency through the mainstream, the business has grown dramatically.

“Just last month I had 400 leads for mining; I mean, it’s absurd, ‘said Bruno. “We’ll be out of service in a facility.”

Energy is the lifeblood of mining operations and Bruno is always looking for more. Bruno announced that he is part of a group that recently signed a letter of intent to buy an old power plant in Auburndale. He said he’s looking for partners and talking to the communities to put machines up and take over places with extra space.

“We’re real miners, but first and foremost I’m a real technologist,” says Bruno. “I believe in the industry and I believe where this is going.”

Bruno, who started an Icelandic mining company years ago, describes himself as a pioneer in the field. He believes news about the emerging industry is slow to reach the masses because the mining community is tightly connected and people have been mining themselves for so long. He is now encouraging others in the industry to share the wealth, particularly in the Tampa Bay area.

“I’m here, I’ve done very, very well, and I believe in Tampa,” he said.

Bruno has been in the area since 1994, playing baseball for the University of Tampa. He is on the alumni board and has used his mining and bitcoin expertise to find creative ways to raise funds for the program.

In addition to running two large facilities in Tampa, Bruno and his team also manage facilities for two of the largest mining companies in the country. Bruno said he had led about 8,000 miners “in the West” for almost three years. Automation software does most of the work, and a team of technicians keep the software working continuously.

“Ultimately, there aren’t many people who do what we do on this scale,” says Bruno.

Colocation data centers enable miners to put their machines online immediately with low up-front costs.

Bruno said he put about $ 2 million and 3.5 megawatts of power into his facilities in downtown Tampa. The old power plant in Auburndale can produce up to 300 megawatts, but it takes about a year to get back on the grid. Bruno has a team of scouts scouring the country for electricity, and they recently secured eight megawatts of Indiana.

However, Bruno makes it clear that he wants to keep his operations in Florida and as close to Tampa Bay as possible. He recently met with the Florida Power Commissioners Association and is in talks with Lakeland Electric to take over some of its buildings.

Many of these old plants and communities have excess electricity but nothing to use and the people who run them don’t have the expertise to reuse it for mining operations. Mining operations that can potentially bring an immense amount of additional funding to a city.

“We’re really out with a lot of different groups to see where we can take places with extra power,” said Bruno. “We just made a deal with a location that has five megawatts of power – just sit there.”

Bruno says that he would like to move back to the St. Pete part of town – he just needs space and strength. He encourages local officials to reach out to him or other miners to see what they need and how the city’s operations can benefit.

Bruno once operated a 90,000 square meter facility in the Gandy area and bought the domain name “Silicon Gandy”. Bruno said he thinks it’s funny that years later people are now comparing the region to a young Silicon Valley because it has become a leader in the financial technology industry.

“I’m not surprised,” he adds. “We need more companies to take over the Tampa Bay area.

“The economy is great and it’s still affordable. A great place to live. “

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