Cellnex Telecom expands to Switzerland by buying Sunrise’s 2,239 cell towers for €430m
24 May 2017 | Alan Burkitt-Gray
Spanish celltower company Cellnex is expanding into Switzerland with the purchase of Sunrise Communications’ subsidiary Swiss Towers, owner of 2,239 sites.
The deal, valued at €430 million, will see Cellnex, controlled by Spanish infrastructure company Abertis, take on 54% of the shares of Swiss Towers, with Deutsche Telekom Capital Partners taking 18% and Swiss Life Asset Managers the other 28%.
Francisco Reynés, chairman of Cellnex Telecom, said the deal “will enable us to further consolidate Cellnex’s European platform to Switzerland, a country marked by stable and secure economic and political environment, while also offering Cellnex clear synergies through its geographical location next to France and Italy, where the Company is also present”.
Cellnex already operates more than 20,000 sites in Spain, Italy, France, Netherlands and the UK. The new deal is expected to be completed in the next two months, said Cellnex. Swiss Towers owns 2,239 of the 11,300 towers in Switzerland.
Sunrise has given Cellnex a master service agreement for 20 years, extendible to a total of 30 or 40 years. Cellnex will add new sites for Sunrise as well as 200 distributed antenna system (DAS) nodes.
Cellnex CEO Tobias Martinez said the tower company “becomes the first independent operator of services and infrastructure for mobile telecommunications with activity in Switzerland”.
He said: “Our expansion stands out for its geographical continuity. For practical purposes, the six countries in which we are now present share physical borders, allowing us to capitalise on certain types of synergies, such as the fact that some of our current and potential customers are already present in several of these countries.”