American Tower has bought Colo Atl, a small Atlanta-based colo provider.

The acquisition marks the first data center purchase for the world’s largest owner of wireless infrastructure.

Atlanta, Georgia
– Thinkstock

A whole new world

American Tower operates more than 170,000 wireless infrastructure sites across 17 countries on five continents. In 2018 the company made more than $7.3 billion in revenue.

Colo Atl operates a 26,000 square foot colocation space and meet-me room in downtown Atlanta.

Timothy Kiser, owner and operator of Colo Atl, told Data Center Frontier: “I think it’s a triple win, this works well for us, provides American Tower with an opportunity to get into a new vertical, and it’s a win for our tenants because they’ll have more business opportunities.”

American Tower has expressed a want to get into the data center sector for a little while now. In the company’s 2018 fourth-quarter earnings call, James Taiclet, President and CEO, said: “Early stage projects are underway and include everything from edge data centers to a potentially significant expansion of our end-building coverage capabilities through CBRS spectrum, to explore a possible role in future autonomous driving in joint control networks.”

In a similar move, H5 Data Centers acquired a facility previously owned by local ISP Taylor Telecom in San Antonio, Texas.

H5 plans to redevelop the property as an edge data center, and is in the process of adding more colocation racks.

Josh Simms, founder and CEO of H5 Data Centers, said at the time: "H5 Data Centers will continue to build upon the existing interconnection ecosystem at 100 Taylor with a planned build of more than 100 colocation cabinets immediately.

"We welcome the opportunity to serve a combination of international communications carriers, content distribution networks and cloud services providers."