Leading Asian integrated telco infra services company, edotco Group, released a new study with Roland Berger, foresees that Tower Companies (TowerCos) can help Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) save billions via infrastructure sharing and result in cumulative savings for consumers due to affordable 5G connectivity by three years.
Titled ‘Towering Above: Building Tomorrow’s Digital Infrastructure in Asia,’ MNOs can save up to USD10 billion and up to USD67 billion cumulative savings by 2025 with the help of TowerCos. Additionally, TowerCos can sustain digital connectivity by reducing up to 17 million metric tonnes in carbon footprint by 2025.
Launched during a panel discussion featuring edotco, Roland Berger, and the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the report explores the critical roles and potential impact of TowerCos across nine key Asian markets. These Asian markets are Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Bangladesh, Pakistan, the Philippines, Myanmar, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka.
According to the report, digital infrastructure is becoming a critical digital economy enabler, with 5G expected to transform the industry. As a result, TowerCos are now changing its roles to become digital infrastructure providers and working closely with industry stakeholders to undertake deeper forms of active infrastructure sharing.
“While MNOs are rapidly expanding their network in low Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) markets such as Asia, they face a significant challenge in keeping their cost per GB under control while striving to meet the industry demands and adhering to regulators’ intended policy and regulatory outcomes. These can only be addressed sustainably through a higher degree of infrastructure sharing,” said Gayan Koralage, Director of Group Strategy, edotco Group.
Despite Southeast Asia and South Asia being among the fastest growing sub-regions in average data usage per user, MNOs have not been able to capitalize on the traffic trend, as per the report. This is causing the continuous decline in ARPU, making it challenging for MNOs to generate commensurate returns with their cost of capital.
“In overcoming the MNOs’ investment conundrums, solutions based on software-defined networking and a stronger partnership with next-generation TowerCos can foster greater scalability, speed and cost advantages. Such partnerships are rapidly unfolding in developed markets, showcasing the TowerCos’ emerging catalytic roles in business, society and the environment,” Koralage added.
TowerCos are poised to assist MNOs by moving up the value chain by offering innovative 5G-enabled solutions such as OpenRAN, Network as-a-Service solutions, and Edge Computing to help MNOs achieve greater cost and network efficiency.
Furthermore, the study suggests that forward-looking regulatory reforms are needed for TowerCos to realize its potential in the next normal and drive economic growth. These include providing incentives and introducing a more conducive regulatory framework for TowerCos to explore more innovative partnerships and services.
Read the full insight from this new report, “Towering Above: Building Tomorrow’s Digital Infrastructure in Asia study,” by visiting https://edotcogroup.com/towering-above/.