You are on page 1of 1

16

Mobile Infrastructure Sharing


Strategic rationale for infrastructure sharing

Strategic rationale for


infrastructure sharing
4.1 Drivers of infrastructure sharing

The commercial drivers of infrastructure sharing


and the types of infrastructure sharing agreement
are likely to differ between countries and according
to levels of market maturity.
In the early phases of network development,
infrastructure sharing is most commonly sitesharing and roaming, which are used to facilitate
quick network roll-out, at a lower cost, by new
entrants. Facilitating sharing can provide an
additional revenue source and lower costs to the
incumbent operators.
As networks mature, and their focus shifts from
deployment to service innovation, drivers such as
cost reduction become increasingly important as
operators seek to optimise profits and revenues.
In this context, two or more incumbent operators
may seek to join part or all of their individual
networks and to build out additional coverage in
a unified manner.

A number of broad key strategic and commercial


drivers exist:
Network expansion into underserved areas
that would otherwise be unprofitable or have a
payback period greater than the business target.
Cost reduction.
Incremental revenue sources.
Capex / opex optimisation.
Facilitation of market entry.
The table below provides some of the key drivers
for each type of infrastructure sharing separately
from the perspective of the network using another
networks assets (except for RAN sharing, which
often implies a truly shared investment in a
common set of assets).

Figure 5: Key drivers for different types of


infrastructure sharing
Type of Sharing

Strategic Drivers

Passive
Site (co-location)
Reduced site acquisition times for new entrants

Access to locations of strategic importance,
particularly where space for new sites is limited

Increased likelihood of obtaining planning
permission for new sites

Reduced opex (site lease)

Expansion into previously unprofitable areas by
reducing capex and opex requirements

Environmental and alleged health concerns,
for example, increasing pressure from
environmental groups on existing operators to
reduce the number of cell sites due to health
concerns
Mast (tower)
times

Reduced site acquisition and build completion


Reduced capex (site build)
Reduced environmental and visual impact

Access
RAN
Reduced number of sites and masts for the same
coverage
Reduced capex and opex
(shared physical backhaul)

Reduced environmental and visual impact
Core network
Fibre ring

Capex and opex saving where spare capacity

Core network elements Delayed investment in core network elements



Reduced maintenance and operational costs

VAS systems


Delayed investment in VAS system elements


Increased capacity VAS systems
Enhanced capability
Reduced maintenance and operational costs

Roaming
National

Reduced or delayed infrastructure investment


Increased coverage

International

Increased service coverage

Inter-system
Facilitation of the introduction of new
technologies
Seamless interoperability between operators own
separate 3G and 2G networks

Delayed investment in new technology
infrastructure