Do you want to invest in the rapid tech innovation taking place, but high-growth (and high-valuation) tech stocks aren't right for you? Tech-focused real estate stocks could be the perfect combination of growth and safety you're looking for. In this Fool Live video clip, recorded on Sept. 3, Millionacres senior real estate analyst Matt Frankel, CFP, discusses two types of REITs (real estate investment trusts) and some specific examples that could be worth a closer look.
Matt Frankel: We have infrastructure REITs next. So this is what I was talking about with the communication REITs. The two biggest real estate companies in the entire stock market are listed right there: American Tower (NYSE:AMT), AMT, and Crown Castle (NYSE:CCI), CCI.
If you're driving down the road and notice those big, ugly cell towers on your route, those are probably owned by one of those two companies. They own and operate these big towers and rent out the space on the top, where companies like AT&T (NYSE:T), Verizon (NYSE:VZ), T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS) will put their communication equipment to build out their networks. The big difference between the two, everyone asks, what's the difference?
Which is better? The biggest difference between the two, despite its name, American Tower is truly a global company. They have operations all over the world and are not focused on the U.S. Crown Castle is exclusively focused on the United States. So if you want more of a domestic investment, go to Crown Castle. If you want an operator that has a truly global presence and has some emerging market potential, American Tower could be better fit for you. Sorry about that.
Next, we have data center REITs. It's a relatively new area of real estate. But if you think about how many more connected devices you have than you did, say, 10 or 20 years ago and how much more complex data in general has gotten, it's really not hard to understand why we have an exponentially growing need for places to safely and securely house networking equipment like servers. So that has given the need for data center REITs. There are a few big players in the space. Digital Realty Trust (NYSE:DLR) is one that I own in my portfolio. They own data centers located all over the world. They're a very big company and there's a lot of growth potential in this space, too, because I do not see the need for data centers and data storage slowing down anytime soon.