Tuesday June 2, 2020

Profile: APWireless goes public

Leading telecoms investment company APWireless acquired by Digital Landscape Group

5th April, 2020
APWireless tailor each offer to the landlord’s specific aims and objectives, ensuring the net benefit is maximised for the client

APWireless is entering its seventh year in business in the Irish telecoms market and is doing so with purpose.

“We have just gone public on the London Stock Exchange and the quality of investors that back APWireless is testament to the successful performance of the business to date,” said Eddie Joyce, Director.

“We have developed an extensive range of products and deal structures with our clients in mind and this has been at the centre of everything we do; it also happens to be what we most enjoy about the business day.”

As the majority of property owners will know, APWireless provides a market to capitalise telecoms rental income, converting the landlord’s telecoms asset into a secure immediate capital sum. Landlords across all industries have benefited, be they small or medium-sized businesses, property investors, hoteliers, multinationals, shopping centre owners or rural landowners.

For APWireless, working closely and in consultation with the site owner is key. “It is satisfying to find the right legal, tax and payment structure to suit each landlord. Educating clients and letting them see the full range of possibilities for their particular telecoms site and circumstance is what unlocks value. It is only at that point that a landlord can make a fully informed decision as to whether a lease capitalisation will leave them in a better financial position than the telecoms rent currently does.”

For telecom site owners, the opportunity to invest capital into their core business and assets is key to APWireless’s partnerships. Understanding each landlord’s investment plans or potential use for capital payment allows APWireless to come up with the right payment and tax structure; it’s not a “one size fits all” approach.

Ronan Loughrey, Associate Director, said: “Our focus is always to maximise the net benefit for the landlord, taking account of various tax benefits that can be availed of depending on the circumstances at play - many of which are unknown to our clients initially.”

Vivian Nathan of Roberts Nathan Accountants & Business Advisors, a top 20 firm, exemplifies this tailored approach. “On exploring the options with APWireless, we quickly realised that we would be better off using the equity elsewhere, rather than leaving it tied up in a unsecured telecoms licence. For us, it made perfect sense to replace an uncertain telecoms rental stream with something tangible. In our minds, partnering with APWireless was the best way to ‘future proof’ the asset.”

Last year was a milestone year for APWireless, having partnered with a substantial number of landlords with varying and significant property interests.

Virtually all clients APWireless completed transactions with over the last 12 months had previously rejected the idea of a capitalisation, with many acknowledging they had not given it due consideration in the past.

“We find more recently that landlords are now taking the time to work with us in identifying the right terms to suit their particular circumstances. Once a landlord fully understands the asset and range of options open to them, it is only then the value becomes apparent.”

Denise Cusack, Managing Director of the Cusack Hotel Group, summed it up: “APW provided a clear context around how the site is valued and why their deals benefit telecom landlords. I previously looked at telecoms rent in the same way as fixed income earned from our hotel rooms, but we realised it is very different; we have little control over the future of the telecoms income or the rent they pay and to a large extent are at the mercy of the mobile operators.

“Once we saw the benefit of deploying APW’s capital in our hotel business, the benefits to our core revenue would far outweigh the rental. APW gave us huge confidence in the way it does business; it worked with our tax and business advisors, O’Doherty Gahan Consultants in Cork, to ensure the benefits were maximised for us.”

APWireless find when they take the landlord through their consultative approach and actively work with the landlord’s financial adviser, and in many cases their solicitor, more often than not a landlord can identify a better use for our capital. When landlords see the possibilities the capital allows comparable to an annual rental income, a transaction almost becomes a no-brainer.

“We have always said our transactions are about the opportunity for the landlord to divest capital and redeploy it into their core business and assets that they fully own and control.”

Another client recently commented: “Our discussions with APWireless started from a position where we did not need to capitalise our telecoms income, nor were we interested in doing so. Our business has diversified successfully by itself, targeting various different areas that have placed us in a very good position.

“Equally, however, we are businesspeople; as our Chief Financial Officer and I engaged with Ronan, we realised that telecoms is not our core business. The level of capital being discussed exceeded any expectations we may have had as to the potential value of the rental income and this sparked internal discussions about what we could do with that money to enhance our property for the public’s experience.

“There was never any pressure to transact, and all interactions were productive and uber professional. Ultimately, APWireless made an offer too good to refuse.”

Loughrey said: “We are proud to have created this market for telecom landlords in Ireland. The fact we are evolving further is exciting too.”

APWireless is readily available to discuss the potential options around your telecoms site today. Now publicly traded, they have never been better placed to meet the requirements of site owners.

Watch: APWireless video testimonials

For more information, contact our team at 091-457880

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