North American operator CAPEX to hit $200B through 2020

by: Kavit Majithia, Mobile World Live

LIVE FROM GSMA MOBILE 360 NORTH AMERICA: Operators across North America will continue to boost capital expenditure through to 2020, despite years of rapid 4G infrastructure rollout, as they now look to “densify” their networks to support strong growth in data traffic, according to a new GSMA report.

The report, Mobile Economy – North America 2015, showed total North American capex has hit nearly $35 billion per year since 2012, accounting for just over 14 per cent of revenues for operators, with the rapid rollout of 4G “proving a key driver of these investment levels”.

According to forecasts, total capex in the region through to 2020 is set to hit $200 billion, as the industry looks to ‘densify’ networks by deploying small cells and distributed antennae, particularly in congested urban areas.

“Overall, capex for North America over the period is likely to grow slowly, slightly below the rate of revenue growth, at an annual average rate of 0.5 per cent per year between 2014 and 2020,” notes the report.

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