In the case of tower sites, the tower owner is the one who has the right to lease space on the tower. The tower owners actively market the tower to get other tenants. Unless your lease specifically states that you will get a share of the revenue from other wireless users on the tower, it is very unlikely that you would ever receive another dime because the lease buyout company is “marketing” your tower. Some of the lease buyout companies provide nice projections showing how much revenue the landowner is likely to receive because of their marketing of the tower. We have reviewed these projections for our clients and they are laughable. In fact, we have asked the lease buyout companies how many employees they have on staff whose sole job is marketing their acquired sites to add other wireless carriers and we have yet to find that any lease buyout company has a single person dedicated to marketing your tower. The buyout companies make these offers because they have found that people are uninformed enough to believe them. Landowners are often enticed to sell a lease for less than what they should because of the possibility of future revenue.
In the case of rooftops, the lease buyout company is trying to buy part of the future revenue of the site without paying for it. Building owners often call us claiming that because they don’t have more wireless carriers on their roof that they need help marketing those properties. We advise them that if their properties are in good locations and have existing wireless carriers on the site, they will likely see additional growth in the future EVEN IF THEY DO NOTHING TO MARKET THE PROPERTY. The wireless carriers seek out qualified sites when they need them. They don’t look at marketing lists- they send someone to the area that will see that your property is superior and approach you directly. Why share revenue with the lease buyout company if they aren’t going to pay anything for it? What most landowners don’t know is that the lease buyout companies will make the same offer for the lease even if they don’t get the revenue sharing.
In either case, we recommend that you don’t enter into any lease buyout agreement that offers to share revenue at your site.