DigitalBridge closes on Vertical Bridge deal, names new head of Europe

15 October 2021 | Melanie Mingas

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DigitalBridge closed its acquisition of a controlling stake in Vertical Bridge.

The stake was acquired in August through the DigitalBridge Investment Management subsidiary for an undisclosed sum.

Vertical Bridge – which last year pledged to become the "world's first carbon neutral towerco" – is the largest private owner and operator of wireless communication infrastructure in the United States. Since 2014 it has expanded its portfolio to more than 308,000 owned or master-leased sites, including over 8,000 towers in the US.

“We are pleased to extend our longstanding relationship with Vertical Bridge, the industry’s leading independent tower platform led by the preeminent tower management team,” said Steven Sonnenstein (pictured), senior managing director of DigitalBridge Investment Management.

“The rapidly increasing demand for telecommunications infrastructure in the United States has created exciting and meaningful opportunities for long-term growth. Our ownership position in Vertical Bridge is representative of our conviction in its future,” Sonnenstein added.

Meanwhile in Europe, DigitalBridge has appointed Matthew Evans as its MD and head of Europe, effective mid-November. With two decades of investment industry experience, he joins from AMP Capital, where he was responsible for all investments in the digital infrastructure sector and successfully led the acquisitions of Axion, eNet, Everstream, Expedient and Towercom, among others.

DigitalBridge CEO Marc Ganzi: “I am pleased to welcome an executive of Matt’s caliber to lead DigitalBridge’s European efforts.

“Matt has an impressive track record in global digital infrastructure investment, and we are confident in his ability to support the significant growth of our portfolio and further develop our footprint.”

The new role will see Evans work alongside the existing DigitalBridge European team with a focus on the origination of new investment opportunities in the European market as well as lending his expertise to provide ongoing support for DigitalBridge’s existing investments.