JOHANNESBURG--(BUSINESS WIRE)--American Tower Corporation’s (American Tower) African operations (ATC Africa) and Airtel Africa plc (Airtel Africa, or the Group) today announced that they have entered into a multi-year, multi-product agreement, leveraging ATC Africa’s vast portfolio of communications sites and new site and product development capabilities across its footprint in Kenya, Niger, Nigeria and Uganda in support of Airtel Africa’s network rollout. Through their combined efforts, the companies expect to substantially increase connectivity on the continent, extend digital inclusion to underserved communities and advance their mutual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reduction objectives.
All new site development under the agreement will comply with ATC Africa’s new green site specifications, which is expected to substantially reduce reliance on fossil fuels, while advancing American Tower’s progress toward achieving its science-based targets (SBTs). Furthermore, this strategic partnership is expected to reduce exposure to fuel price volatility for both ATC Africa and Airtel Africa. The parties have also committed to continue working together to convert existing telecommunications sites to ATC Africa’s green site specifications over time.
In addition, Airtel Africa and ATC Africa will partner to provide training around information and communications technology skills to underserved communities as part of their respective kiosks and Digital Communities programs. Under this partnership, it is expected that more than 200 Digital Communities will be deployed in these markets in the coming years.
“Over the last several years, ATC Africa has made forward-thinking investments to ensure we achieve tangible reductions in our on-site fossil fuel consumption in Africa,” Marek Busfy, SVP and CEO of ATC Africa stated.
To date, ATC Africa has invested approximately $300 million in energy efficiency improvements, renewable energy deployments and energy storage solutions to decrease on-site reliance on fossil fuels. The company has also earmarked additional investments to fund the implementation of future energy efficiencies.
“As we selectively extend the platform services we offer, we are demonstrating our commitment to introduce new and renewable sources of energy to power our sites, which protects the industry, our customers and consumers from ongoing and future volatility in fuel prices. Airtel Africa’s environmental goals are aligned with ours and, as we expand digital reach on the African continent, we remain committed to reducing GHG emissions in tandem with our growth.” Busfy adds, “Furthermore, through our Digital Communities program, we will be able to meaningfully improve quality of life in our markets through connectivity.”
Commenting on this landmark agreement, Segun Ogunsanya, CEO of Airtel Africa, said that “The company has once again demonstrated its commitment to creating value for customers and shareholders by subscribing to an environmentally sustainable growth model. Airtel Africa’s corporate citizenship requires us to extend coverage to increasingly remote areas – and meeting this obligation is necessary to establishing a sustainable partnership with a like-minded industry player. We continue to invest in infrastructure and distribution networks across the countries where we operate to support their economies and communities. Sustainability is at the core of our strategy, driven by our corporate purpose to transform lives across Africa and support people, businesses, and governments in getting access to better connectivity.”
About American Tower
American Tower, one of the largest global REITs, is a leading independent owner, operator and developer of multitenant communications real estate with a portfolio of approximately 222,000 communications sites and a highly interconnected footprint of U.S. data center facilities. For more information about American Tower, please visit the “Earnings Materials” and “Investor Presentations” section of our investor relations website at www.americantower.com.
American Tower in Africa
We established our presence in Africa in 2011 and today operate more than 23,000 sites across Burkina Faso, Ghana, Kenya, Niger, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda. Our customers include the region’s leading Mobile Network Operators (MNOs). Access to broadband services has helped unlock an array of new opportunities and services that are enhancing the livelihoods of Africans, spurring Africa’s economic growth, and advancing the 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda for the continent.
Cautionary Language Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” concerning American Tower’s goals, beliefs, expectations, strategies, objectives, plans, future operating results and underlying assumptions and other statements that are not necessarily based on historical facts. Forward-looking statements can generally be identified by the use of words such as “anticipate,” “believe,” “continue,” “could,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecast,” “intend,” “may,” “plan,” “project,” “potential,” “seek,” “should,” “think,” “will,” “would” and similar expressions, or they may use future dates. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated in American Tower’s forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, including those factors set forth in Item 1A of its Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2021 under the caption “Risk Factors.” American Tower undertakes no obligation to update the information contained in this press release to reflect subsequently occurring events or circumstances.
Airtel Africa is a leading provider of telecommunications and mobile money services, with a presence in 14 countries in Africa, primarily in East Africa and Central and West Africa. Airtel Africa offers an integrated suite of telecommunications solutions to its subscribers, including mobile voice and data services as well as mobile money services both nationally and internationally. The Group aims to continue providing a simple and intuitive customer experience through streamlined customer journeys.