Just a few years ago both AT&T and Verizon sold off most of their cellular towers. For that, they got about $5 Blllion in cash, each.
Verizon used the money to purchase AOL, and as that was such a strategic acquisition they then went on to spend that much again to purchase Yahoo.
By selling off their towers, these companies transformed themselves from being a fixed cost business into a variable cost business. They shortchanged the future for the sake of today. But then, why would a company want to own the key assets that its business depended upon?
So it should now come as no surprise that both AT&T and Verizon have come to the realization that they must now pay rent. They are tenants on those towers, and they have found themselves with higher operating costs and with lower margins. Worse, they suddenly have realized that anybody