NTT Docomo and JTower revealed plans to strengthen infrastructure sharing by setting up a capital and business alliance, seeking to reduce investment and energy use as they expand 5G coverage.

In a joint statement, they companies revealed Docomo will acquire part of the JTower shares held by its parent company and become a shareholder with 2.5 per cent voting rights. The businesses will install indoor and outdoor base stations, and develop new network sharing equipment.

The two forged a network sharing arrangement in 2016, with Docomo first using JTower’s 4G sites and adding 5G in the Tokyo area in 2020.

Last month, Rakuten Mobile became the fourth operator in Japan to take a stake in JTower.

In July, NTT agreed to sell 71 towers to JTower for an undisclosed amount.