Verizon and American Tower Corporation have announced a long-term lease agreement designed to support the carrier’s 5G network deployment across the tower company’s U.S. communications sites. According to the pair, the deal will “provide a simplified and efficient leasing process through a contractual framework to drive mutual growth over a multi-year period.”
American Tower’s President of the U.S. Tower Division Steve Vondran commented further: “This agreement represents another key milestone and an extension of our decades-long strategic partnership with Verizon. We look forward to supporting Verizon as they continue their accelerated and efficient 5G network build-out by utilizing our distributed nationwide portfolio of high-quality communications sites.”
In 2015, American Tower acquired the exclusive right to 11,448 of Verizon’s wireless communications sites, which at the time, increased the company’s U.S. tower count to approximately 40,000.
Since then, the tower company has focused on the expansion of 5G. In the U.S., for example, it has been investing in more efficient and scalable power solutions at many of the company’s sites to be ready for the requirements of U.S. carriers extending their 5G networks nationwide.
“What we do expect to be unique to 5G is the added use of massive MIMO technology for mid-band spectrum deployments on our macro towers, which should provide operators with more dynamic coverage and capacity capabilities,” said American Tower President and CEO Tom Bartlett during a 2021 conference call with investors. “The race to nationwide 5G with the use of massive MIMO will require more fiber connections to antennas, increased DC power, and enough capacity to accommodate the size and weight of these more intelligent RF solutions. We’ve also upgraded the capacity of many of our tower structures over the last decade, installed energy efficient LED lighting on many sites, and invested in site hardening initiatives where appropriate. Simply put, we stand ready to service our customers as they accelerate their 5G deployments.”
For Verizon, the new agreement with American Tower is another example of how the carrier is using efficient and strategic partnerships to advance its position in the marketplace.
“Verizon continues to build and run the networks that drive innovation, digitization and technological advancements that are changing our world,” said Heidi Hemmer, senior vice president of engineering at Verizon. “Efficient, long-term strategic partnerships with our vendors are critical to continue advancing the industry forward, and providing the network our customers have come to rely on.”