Update: The Australian tower market 2020 – Telstra’s TowerCo

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Update: The Australian tower market 2020 – Telstra’s TowerCo

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Update: The Australian tower market 2020 – Telstra’s TowerCo

The market for traditional macro-towers in Australia is mature. All three carriers have been expanding their tower networks only incrementally in recent years, and site growth is low. 5G will not change this significantly, because 5G base stations are being mounted on existing towers, not new ones.


Key Takeaways

The Australian mobile market – declining growth potential


Price sensitive market
Fixed wireless opportunity – margin improvement not new revenue
No fourth operator

Evolution of the tower market

Macro tower networks

Tower sale scenarios – the scope for upside

Telstra sale
Optus sale
Growing capacity demand shifts focus to small cells
Specific small cell challenges
Can tower companies win in small cells?


Figure 1. Total mobile revenue (MBB service +handset service + handset hardware) in A$m and mobile subscribers (MBB + Handset) [‘000]

Figure 2. Consumer churn intentions, April 2020

Figure 3. Forecast 5G takeup as share of total mobile handset and mobile broadband connections

Figure 4. Expiry dates for mobile spectrum licences (in date order)

Figure 5. Australian MNO spectrum allocations in urban areas by spectrum band, 2020

Figure 6. Optus tower investment infographic, 2017

Figure 7. Proposed Telstra structure, November 2020

Figure 8. Small cell deployments in Australia

Figure 9. Projected macro tower and small cell growth in APAC

Figure 10. Fibre as percentage of capex per site, macro vs small cell deployment

Figure 11. Small cell configurations

Figure 12. Small cell capability matrix