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Vodafone’s European towerco and RAN sharing will transform 5G costs

Vodafone has expanded and refreshed its network sharing deal with Telefónica O2 in the UK, and will also create “Europe’s largest tower portfolio” by placing its 61,700 towers, spread over 10 countries, into a new towerco, which will operate from May 2020 with its own management team and balance sheet. This sees Vodafone following a now-common trend for MNOs to offload their towers, either into arm’s-length subsidiaries, or with sales to third party tower operators. This removes the high operating costs from their balance sheets and is a first step to separate infrastructure and services businesses, allowing them to address the very different financial norms of those two markets independently, and generate more shareholder value as a result. There will…

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