Crown Castle International Corp. CCI bagged a long-term lease agreement with DISH Network Corporation DISH to rent out space to the latter on up to 20,000 of its communication towers. Additionally, as part of the multi-year anchor tenant tower agreement, Dish will have access to specific fiber transport services and the option to use Crown Castle for pre-construction.
The agreement is for tower leases spanning across the nation and will support DISH’s nationwide, first open, standalone and virtualized 5G network deployments.
While DISH announced several wireless vendor relations, this marks the first infrastructure partnership announced by the company. Such progress provides visibility to DISH’s 5G network rollout.
Per Crown Castle management, “DISH’s 5G network buildout marks an important development for the industry, and we believe our ability to offer towers, small cells and fiber solutions at scale provides us the best opportunity to deliver value as we support their wireless infrastructure needs.”
Notably, Crown Castle’s unmatched and extensive portfolio of towers in the United States, with a significant presence in the top 100 basic trading areas and significant investment in the fiber segment, has likely enabled the company to bag the lease.
Specifically, it has been expanding the fiber segment on the back of acquisitions, and construction of small cells and fiber. The company witnessed the highest small-cell deployment in 2019, deploying roughly 10,000 small-cell nodes. It anticipates continuing the momentum in the current year by deploying another 10,000 small-cell nodes and a similar activity level in 2021.
Moreover, Crown Castle purchased LTS Group Holdings LLC (Lightower) in 2017. With this buyout, the company gained around 32,000 route miles of fiber in top metro markets in the Northeast region of the nation.
Hence, amid the healthy operating environment for towers with high carrier network spent, owing to investments in 5G and 4G densification, Crown Castle is now likely to reap benefits from such investments. Moreover, the lease is likely to indicate that the company will support a significant part of DISH’s network buildout. This will likely drive its rental revenues in the upcoming period.
Shares of this Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) have gained 21.7% over the past year against the industry’s decline of 2.4%.
Stocks to Consider
Alpine Income Property Trust, Inc.’s PINE funds from operations (FFO) per share estimates for 2020 have been revised upward by 1.7% to $1.21 over the past month. The company carries a Zacks Rank of 2 (Buy), currently. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Extra Space Storage Inc’s EXR Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2020 FFO per share has moved upmarginally to $5.02 over the past week. The company currently carries a Zacks Rank of 2.
Note: Anything related to earnings presented in this write-up represent funds from operations (FFO) — a widely used metric to gauge the performance of REITs.
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