Topsaw’s 3 Sisters, LLC (Topsaw) is a small timber business based in Georgetown, SC. Topsaw had a cell tower lease that provided the business steady income for 25 years. The tower was located on 14 acres of valuable timber land, which was going into foreclosure. The landlord was searching for a tower company to buy the lease and use the proceeds to buy the acreage out of foreclosure.
• Site Property: The underlying property was encumbered by a mortgage and was going into foreclosure.
• Cell Site Lease: The underlying site lease with American Tower had expired and the tower company was operating in holdover. The site owner was not interested in negotiating a lease extension with American Tower.
Objectives: To mitigate the challenges, Topsaw partnered with TowerPoint to:
• Purchase and manage the cell tower lease; and
• Secure funding to buy back acreage from the lender after the foreclosure.
Solutions: TowerPoint, the site owner and other parties worked together to:
• Provide a lump sum payment to the cell site owner at closing;
• Negotiate with the lender to take the proceeds of the sale to convey the fee simple interest back to property owner; and
• Transfer assignment of the lease to TowerPoint, which negotiated an extension with American Tower post-closing.
Topsaw sold its wireless real estate to TowerPoint for a lump sum payment allowing it to purchase seven acres of timber land back from the lender; pay off its mortgage on another office property; and transfer its lease assignment.