Cellnex aims to reach 80pc of Irish population with IoT network this year

15 Feb 2022

Colin Cunningham, managing director of Cellnex Ireland. Image: Shane O'Neill/SON Photographic

The Spanish telecom giant said it has tripled its Irish portfolio in the last 12 months after acquiring tower assets from Three Ireland’s owner.

Cellnex, a Spanish telecom giant with operations in the Irish market, has said its internet of things (IoT) network will be delivered to 80pc of the population of Ireland and all major cities by the end of this year.

The new IoT network, plans for which were first announced in 2020, will be based on low-power wide-area network, or LoRaWAN, technology. It will have applications in areas such as asset tracking, building and energy management, air and water quality monitoring, waste management and parking validation.

Cellnex has partnered with IoT network developer Everynet to roll out this network.

It follows the success of a pilot project launched last year in Edenderry, Co Offaly, where LoRaWAN technology was applied to help manage parking, litter, air quality and building energy use.

Paul Delaney, IoT lead and sales director at Cellnex Ireland, said that the company aims to make IoT a “practical and positive reality in everyday life, transforming the way in which a huge range of services can be operated and managed”.

“The partnership in Edenderry launched last year is just the tip of the iceberg of what can be achieved in delivering applications from monitoring parking spaces to measuring air quality and will drive efficiencies in the delivery of public services,” he said.

The Barcelona-headquartered telecom giant first entered the Irish market in 2019 when it acquired Irish telecoms infrastructure company Cignal in a deal worth €210m.

Cellnex Ireland managing director Colin Cunningham said that in the last 12 months, Cellnex has tripled the size of its Irish portfolio to more than 1,800 sites after acquiring 1,150 towers from Three-owner CK Hutchison in January 2021. The deal was part of a larger agreement to acquire Hutchison towers and sites in Austria, Ireland, Denmark, Sweden, Italy and the UK.

“Our ambition is to continue to grow our core business but also to accelerate our diversification into IoT and DAS [distributed antenna system] solutions, leveraging our group’s expertise to meet the ever-increasing needs of public and private businesses,” Cunningham said.

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Vish Gain is a journalist with Silicon Republic