Globe 100

No. 4 overall | No. 1 telecom company

American Tower rides the wireless boom

Globe file

American Tower Corp.’s growth strategy is based on a premise that’s hard to dispute. The Boston company that placed fourth on the 2013 Globe 100 list believes consumer demand for mobile communication and entertainment is only going to grow stronger in the future.

American Tower, which operates communications sites around the world, saw that demand propel profit up 60 percent to $637 million last year. Chief executive James Taiclet believes installation of fourth-generation wireless technology will require more towers and additional communication devices on existing cell sites.

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At the end of 2007, American Tower executives anticipated rapid growth ahead and set a goal of doubling business over the next five years. The company generated nearly $1.5 billion in revenue and operated 23,000 towers that year. By 2012, American Tower’s revenue had climbed 98 percent to $2.9 billion, and its tower count grew to 54,000.

Now American Tower has a new goal in mind. Taiclet says the company expects its business to double again over the next five to six years.

Steven Syre can be reached at syre@globe.com.
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