What's happening with the NextDC share price on Thursday?

NextDC is raising $1.32 billion to accelerate its data centre developments amid the rapid growth of AI.

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The NextDc Ltd (ASX: NXT) share price is in the green today.

Shares in the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO) tech stock closed flat yesterday at $15.55 a share. In morning trade on Thursday, shares are swapping hands for $15.70 apiece, up 1.0%.

For some context, the ASX 200 is up 0.4% at this same time.

Here's what's happening.

What's happening with the ASX 200 tech stock?

The NextDC share price is marching higher after the company announced that the retail component of its capital raising entitlement offer opens today.

NextDC reported on its $1.32 billion capital raising last Thursday when shares entered a two-day trading halt.

The funds are being raised via a 1 for 6 entitlement share offer. The cash will be used to bring forward the development and fitout of its core data centre assets in Sydney and Melbourne.

"NextDC continues to see significant growth in demand for its data centre services underpinned by powerful structural tailwinds," CEO Craig Scroggie said on the day.

On Monday, management announced the successful completion of the institutional component of the entitlement offer, raising gross proceeds of around $937 million.

Commenting on that success, Scroggie said:

We are delighted with the exceptional level of support from our existing institutional shareholders in this entitlement offer. The raising ensures NextDC is positioned to continue to take advantage of the unprecedented growth in demand for data centre services that we are seeing across the market.

With new shares being issued for $15.40 apiece, the NextDC share price closed down 5.0% on Monday.

Today, eligible retail shareholders were invited to participate in the retail entitlement offer at the same price of $15.40 per share. NextDC expects the retail component will raise approximately $384 million.

The company is also offering eligible retail shareholders the opportunity to apply for additional shares up to a maximum of 100% in excess of their entitlement at the offer price.

Management expects the retail offer will close at the end of the day on 2 May.

These data centres will need power

On Friday, when the NextDC share price remained frozen, we reported on the tremendous growth in electricity demand expected from AI-enabled data centres.

While ESG credentials are important and companies like NextDC are turning to renewables and battery back-up, Scroggie warned that wasn't enough for the next generation of data centres. He forecasts these will use 10 times as much energy as traditional data centres.

And the solution to reliable baseload power may be nuclear.

"We need power, we need transmission networks, we need green energy, we need more solar, we need more wind and, frankly, we need nuclear," Scroggie said.

NextDC share price snapshot

The NextDC share price has been a strong performer over the past year, with shares up 33% in 12 months.

Motley Fool contributor Bernd Struben has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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