TowerXchange deal analysis: American Tower acquires Eaton Towers South Africa
ATC South Africa strengthens their position in one of Africa’s most investible tower markets
With most of the region’s most investible MNO towers already sold, the wave of towerco consolidation continues in SSA. With the acquisition of 300 towers but, more importantly, the acquisition of Eaton’s elite South African management team, American Tower has reinforced their competitive position in the highly attractive yet under-penetrated South African market, as rumours continue about the prospective divestiture of MTN’s towers.
Acquiring Eaton Towers South Africa shores up American Tower’s leadership position in one of Africa’s last investible tower markets where there remains the potential for exponential growth. Towercos own just 8% of the towers in the 29,947 tower South African market, but rumours persist that MTN may sell their ~9,000 towers in the country, so acquiring Eaton’s South African business may have eliminated one of American Tower’s primary competitors in that prospective auction, whilst blocking (for now) the market entry of other towercos which may have been interested in South Africa.