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American Tower to launch fiber service in four new Minas Gerais cities

Bnamericas Published: Tuesday, November 22, 2022
American Tower to launch fiber service in four new Minas Gerais cities

American Tower is expanding its Brazilian neutral fiber optic network to another four municipalities in its core state of Minas Gerais: Manhuaçu, Corinto, Curvelo and Bocaiúva.

The world’s leading wireless tower provider, for which Latin America is one of its main testbeds for the neutral fiber business, reports having more than 25,000km of fiber crossing five Brazilian states, although only the backbone in Minas Gerais is effectively in operation. 

The company’s network is available in 120 localities in the state, with the new four cities to be added “soon”, American Tower said in a social media publication.

The company has invested in expanding capacity and coverage in Minas Gerais since it bought network assets from local utility Cemig in 2018. 

In addition to Minas Gerais, the firm's fiber grid also crosses the southwest of São Paulo state, parts of Rio de Janeiro and Goiás, as well as the south of Bahia. 

The company previously said it was planning to launch commercial fiber services in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro states by the end of this year and in Bahia state in 2023.

Outside Brazil, American Tower's Latin America fiber business is also available in Mexico, Argentina and Colombia, albeit on a smaller scale. Elsewhere around the world, the company also sells fiber services in selected African markets.

According to the group's annual report, American Tower has invested more than US$1bn in the fiber business in Latin America and Africa since 2018.

TOWER

Despite the growing investments in fiber, the company’s core business in both Brazil and the rest of Latin America is telecom towers.

Latin America is the second most important geography for American Tower after the US and Canada, accounting for 16.1% of its total property revenue in 2Q22. 

During the quarter, the company added 68 new towers in Latin America, reaching a total of 45,558.

Of its full Latin America portfolio, it had 20,643 towers in Brazil, its third largest market in terms of tower numbers after the US and India, down from 22,839 at end-June. 

Elsewhere in Latin America, it had 9,627 in Mexico (down from 10,027 as of June 30), 4,977 in Colombia (down from 4,982), 3,938 in Peru (down from 4,379), 3,738 in Chile (down from 3,875), 1,445 in Paraguay (flat), 695 in Costa Rica (down from 697) and 495 in Argentina (down from 503).

PUBLIC LIGHTING

Another of the firm's bets directly derived from the tower business is on IoT.

Last month, American Tower announced a deal with IoT device manufacturer BottomUp and Recife public services company Emlurb to expand the telemanagement system in the Brazilian city's street-lighting network.

The first stage of that project comprises street lights along 50 major road corridors in the city, which will use a smart monitoring system via American Tower's neutral IoT network, which is based on LoraWan technology. 

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