US Wireless Tower Market Standing Tall Despite Headwinds

By Jeff Johnston

March 2019

Key Points

  • The U.S. tower industry is facing multiple crosscurrents that offer opportunities and threats.
  • The forecasted growth in mobile data, expected deployment of fallow spectrum, and new wireless operators are fueling tower demand.
  • Carrier consolidation and new market entrants are creating some uncertainty for the urban/suburban tower market. However, the rural market should see increased tower demand as operators expand their rural coverage footprints.
  • Small cells and C-RAN (consolidated radio access network) will impact macro tower growth and negatively impact ground leases.
  • Despite the headwinds facing the tower industry, there is reason to be optimistic that the underlying demand for data, and greenfield network builds, will offset the challenges facing the industry.

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