TOWER company Frontier Tower Associates Philippines, Inc. (Frontier Towers) announced on Thursday the completion of its 500th tower in the country, indicating its strong presence in the telecom tower industry.

Frontier Towers, a subsidiary of telecommunications infrastructure provider Pinnacle Towers Pte. Ltd., “erected its 500th common telecom tower this week, marking the most of any tower company in the Philippines,” the company said in an e-mailed statement.

Pinnacle is backed by global investment firm KKR, which has also provided capital for Metro Pacific Hospitals, the hospital arm of Metro Pacific Investment Corp., as well as Voyager Innovations, Inc., a unit of PLDT, Inc.

The government has been pushing for mobile network operators to share infrastructure since 2017, saying every tower in the country serves more than 7,000 subscribers, as opposed to the ideal of having 1,000 subscribers per tower, and the usual 2,000 subscribers per tower in countries with faster internet.

“By constructing more common telecom towers that can be used by multiple mobile network operators concurrently, mobile network operators are able to improve their offerings to Filipino consumers, such as through improved speeds, in a sustainable manner,” Frontier Towers said.

Frontier Towers is among the first 23 tower companies that secured a provisional license to own, construct, manage, and operate common towers in the Philippines.

The PLDT group announced in April that its subsidiaries, Smart Communications, Inc. and Digitel Mobile Philippines, Inc., had signed sale and purchase deals in connection with the sale of its 5,907 telecom towers and related passive telecom infrastructure for P77 billion to the subsidiaries of international telecommunications infrastructure services companies edotco Group and EdgePoint.

Hastings Holdings, Inc., a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc., has a majority stake in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. — Arjay L. Balinbin