Zayo's organic buildout engine had been somewhat quiet for a spell, so this morning's news of a new expansion project in the Pacific Northwest was a welcome one. Zayo says it has won a new fiber-to-the-tower deal with a major wireless carrier that will see more than 500 towers on-net, of which 350 will be in Greater Seattle.
The deal, which closed in June, has a 20 year lifespan and will cost the company some $61M in capex with an 11% return as 90% of the locations will be a single-tenant expansion. That of course assumes they don't find any additional tenants on those towers, each of which will improve the economics. Zayo's FTT business now has some 8,000 towers either online or in the pipeline.
The expansion will also add some 350 route miles to the company's Seattle fiber footprint, making more than 900 total route miles when all is said and done. It will therefore also take them closer to more enterprises around the region, increasing overall density.
Zayo's year started with an M&A bang with the purchase of Latisys, but it is organic expansions like this that make all its M&A activity worthwhile - taking the assets and doing more with them. Most of Zayo's original Seattle footprint came with the AboveNet deal of course.