If your client currently leases ground space for a cell tower or rooftop space for similar antenna telecom equipment then they have, more than likely, been contacted by a private company looking to buy their telecom lease.
Companies like Unison, Communication Capital Group and AP Wireless and others are looking to purchase the cash flow from your client’s cell tower lease at a discount. They make money the old-fashioned way: off the assets of others. These companies offer deals that are usually structured based on a one-time lump sum payment to the property owner. As good as that might sound, it may not be your client’s best option.
So what are these companies asking for in return? These companies want two basic things: (1) they want the right to collect the rents the property owner is currently collecting under their present cell tower lease and (2) they want a right to control it by way of a long term or perpetual easement.
Many property owners/landlords I have spoken to have been engaged by representatives that use certain methods to create a state of panic that made the property owner more likely to dispose of his/her lease. How do these companies do this?
1. They will suggest that future technology (mini or micro cell phone towers) will make the cell tower or rooftop equipment located on the leased area obsolete;
2. The end is near, meaning that termination of your client’s tower lease is eminent; or
3. These same companies seeking to buy a property owner’s lease will create an allusion that consolidation of certain cell phone companies will shorten the term of the lease.
The worst mistake you can make is not having the information and proper counsel when your client is confronted with a lease buyout deal. Your client could be leaving tens of thousands of dollars, if not more, on the table that will not be recoverable. These third party buyout companies do not want you or your client to have the same information they do, nor do they want you to have proper representation. Get information, get representation, get paid the true value of your lease.
Hugh has over fifteen (15) years legal/telecom experience, including representing AT&T as an attorney for over ten (10) years in that company’s acquisition and disposition of telecommunication sits across North America and abroad. Hugh is the founder and president of Vertical Consultants a telecommunications consulting firm. Vertical Consultants specializes in assisting property owners optimize the value of any proposed or existing cell tower or rooftop lease. Vertical Consultants invites you to learn more at www-vertical-consultants.com. Hugh can be contacted at 877-456-7552.