Stilmark building a name as a ‘connectivity facilitator’

How people use their mobile phones is changing rapidly – propelled by the rollout of 5G technology promising higher data access speeds, low latencies, and greater reliability.

Local governments support more connected communities but often find themselves conflicted on the installation of facilities to widen 5G coverage.

Processing applications for installing new equipment, including managing planning requirements around heritage and visual impact, is a known challenge for councils.

Step forward Stilmark, a neutral company that builds owns and operates mobile towers – and which has a growing reputation as a “trusted facilitator” between councils and carriers in their shared goals of achieving better mobile connectivity outcomes for communities.

Stilmark’s main businesses is developing telecommunications towers to lease to the likes of Telstra, Optus, and Vodafone.

However, it also works with local governments around Australia to ensure new facilities are sensitive to council requirements and local community needs but which also meet carriers’ needs. In the past 18 months, the company has worked with over 100 councils.

Stilmark CEO Steven Butler says transparency and good communications (including an ability to listen) are the key requirements for securing better outcomes for all parties.

“We know that new telecommunications facilities are sensitive matters,” he says. “We’re really mindful of that when where we’re working with a council that’s closely engaged with its communities, as they all are.

“Councils want better connectivity for their communities, and the carriers want to provide that, so there’s a real balancing act to try and find the best path and best fit for everyone.”

The company also has a focus on ensuring successful long-term partnerships.

“We make sure people understand that this infrastructure will be there for some time,” Mr Butler says.

“Discussing this up-front means we can be really clever and thoughtful about where we put deploy new infrastructure. That way, we get a good outcome which will not need to be revisited in five, 10 or 20 years,” he said.

Stilmark is sponsoring ALGA’s Local Roads and Transport Congress at Wagga Wagga, NSW on 16-17 November, and will have representatives on hand to discuss working with local governments.