TowerXchange’s state of the market: SSA tower industry growth 2014-15
Majority of desirable towers now transferred; transactions to slow in 2015
In the two years between the publication of the first edition of the TowerXchange Journal in December 2012 and December 2014, the number of towers owned and managed by independent towercos rose from 17,000 (12% of Africa’s towers) to 47,600 (29%). The SSA towerco market is dominated by the ‘Big Four’; private equity backed towercos Eaton Towers, Helios Towers Africa and IHS, plus publicly listed giant American Tower, joined by a handful of regional and ‘middle market’ towercos. In this article, we reflect on the state of the SSA tower market at the dawn of 2015.
State of the market
The African tower industry’s 47,600 towers are divided between Africa’s ‘Big Four’ multi-country towercos (IHS has 22,000 towers, American Tower 9,936, Helios Towers Africa 7,800-8,300 and Eaton Towers just over 5,000), a couple of significant single country towercos (Helios Towers Nigeria with 1,300 and TowerCo of Madagasacar with ~200), plus a handful of ‘middle market towercos’, primarily in Nigeria and South Africa.