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NTT to transfer JTower stake to DOCOMO following new alliance

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In a move intended to promote the development of efficient and high-value 5G networks, JTower and DOCOMO have formed a capital and business alliance.

The news will see DOCOMO's parent company NTT transfer its stake in JTower to DOCOMO, making it a shareholder with 2.5% voting rights in the future, and paving the way for greater infrastructure sharing.

In addition to considering ways to develop new indoor and outdoor networks, and the efficient use of existing towers, the companies will develop an efficient 5G network which will lead to the reduction of capital investments and other costs, as well as power consumption, and installation spaces.

According to the firms there are three benefits to the move. To promote the development of efficient and high-value-added 5G networks as well as the efficient installation of base stations by sharing information on JTower's Infra-Sharing related developments and DOCOMO's targeted buildings and sites for base stations. Thirdly, the development and utilisation of new infra-sharing equipment through sharing technologies and knowledges of both companies.

The infra-sharing move isn't entirely new. DOCOMO started using JTower's Infra-Sharing solution – In-Building-Solution, or IBS – for its 4G network in 2016 and has expanded its use nationwide. Furthermore, from October 2020, the company started using 5G IBS. At the time JTower installed 5G IBS in the Tokyo Metropolitan Government as the first 5G Infra-Sharing in Japan, it also begun using Smart Poles in the Nishi-Shinjuku area of Tokyo.

Smart Poles are a multi-functional pole with 5G base stations, Wifi, surveillance camera, and digital signage, in addition to other features.

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