Orange County Business Journal

Mobilitie Gets $415M for Expansion

Chris Casacchia Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Newport Beach’s Mobilitie LLC, which buys and builds cell phone towers and leases them to wireless phone network operators, has secured $415 million in financing with Toronto-based TD Securities.

The loans will be used to support the construction and acquisition of additional towers and distributed antenna systems in the U.S. and international markets, according to the company.

The deal includes $245 million in senior secured notes with a maturity date of June 2016 and $170 million in delayed-term loans that can be drawn down and repaid with a maturity date of June 2017.

Under the deal, an additional $100 million credit line is available.

Mobilitie’s big customers include Deutsche Telekom AG’s T-Mobile USA Inc., Verizon Wireless, a unit of New York’s Verizon Communications Inc., Sprint Nextel Corp., AT&T Inc. and Clearwire Corp.

Each carrier pays on average about $2,000 per month per tower.

The company was established in 2005 by Deloitte & Touche LLP veteran Gary Jabara, who invested his own money.

Los Angeles-based private equity firm Oaktree Capital Management LP has a stake in Mobilitie.

The company has offices in Chicago, Boston, New York, Dallas, Virginia, Washington, Tennessee, Kansas and Florida.

Mobilitie is growing in an industry that’s dominated by a handful of publicly traded tower operators, including Houston’s Crown Castle International Corp., Boston’s American Tower Corp. and Boca Raton, Fla.-based SBA Communications Corp.

It owns more than 2,500 cell phone towers in the U.S. and sees about $100 million in yearly sales.