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Crown Castle – Who Are They?

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Crown Castle International Corp, d/b/a Crown Castle, is an American corporation that is the largest cell tower owner/developer, owning/operating over 40,000 cell towers in North America and providing coverage to 98 of the top 100 markets.

Crown Castle is headquartered in Canonsburg, Pennsylvania. Crown Castle operates in the United States, Puerto Rico and Australia and provides mobile telephone coverage to 92% of the Australian population. Crown does lease space to wireless service providers, such as Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile.

On August 31, 2004, Crown Castle completed the sale of its UK subsidiary, Crown Castle UK, to National Grid Transco PLC for $2.035 billion.

On January 12, 2007, Crown Castle completed the acquisition of Global Signal Inc., a rival U.S. tower operator, which was based Florida.

On December 11, 2011, Crown Castle announced a definitive agreement to purchase NextG Networks, Inc. for about $1.0 billion. NextG had over 7,000 distributed antenna system nodes on-air at the time of the agreement, with another 1,500 nodes under construction, as well as rights to more than 4,600 miles of fiber optic cables.

On September 28, 2012, Crown Castle entered a tower leasing agreement with T-Mobile USA. The deal leases 7,200 wireless towers to the company for a term of 28 years in exchange for $2.4 billion. After the deal ends in 2040, Crown Castle may be able to purchase the towers for an additional $2.4 billion.

On October 20, 2013, Crown Castle entered into a tower leasing agreement with AT&T Mobility. The deal leases 9,700 wireless towers to the company for a term of 28 years in exchange for $4.85 billion. Crown Castle also gained the right to acquire the towers outright in the future for $4.2 billion. 600 towers will be acquired outright by Crown Castle in the future. AT&T will pay $1,900 per month to access the towers, with rent rising approximately 2% per year. The towers have an average tenant base of 1.6, signifying that the future collocation potential is high. AT&T portfolio has significantly higher numbers of towers, with less than 20 years remaining until expiration.

During 2013, Crown extended over 1,000 cell tower leases and purchased more than 800 via their lease buyout program. It now controls the land beneath almost 70% of its towers for more than 20 years, with an average term of 29 years remaining on its land leases.

Vertical Consultants continues to advise its clients of the opportunities they have regarding their AT&T lease due to the Crown Castle transaction.

If you have been contacted by Crown Castle, then call us today, and we will review your lease and your tower site to see what options you truly have and how to optimize those options.

Vertical Consultants is always open to providing you with not only references from clients we have assisted, but we will let you speak to them directly.