Carlos Slim eyes entry into Mexico's television market

GMT 22:15 2014 Wednesday ,09 July

Arab Today, arab today Carlos Slim eyes entry into Mexico's television market

Carlos Slim in Mexico City
Mexico City - AFP

Mexican telephone tycoon Carlos Slim's America Movil is planning to enter the television business, company officials said Wednesday, one day after the legislature here approved sweeping telecoms reform.
Slim is eyeing paid television service as the next move for the company, said Arturo Elias Ayub, the company's spokesman and the phone magnate's son-in-law.
"We want to offer our clients that famous 'Triple Play' service," said Ayub, referring to the trifecta of phone, Internet and television service offered by some communications companies in the United States and elsewhere.
On Tuesday, America Movil announced it would slash its majority share of the Mexican telephone market to below 50 percent, and that it would cease being the "dominant economic force" in that sector.
That move came just minutes after passage by the legislature of an ambitious telecoms reform designed to trim the power of telephone and TV monopolies.
New opportunities created by America Movil's partial sell-off already were being seized upon by its competitors on Wednesday, including the Mexican affiliate of Spain's Telefonica, which said it was looking forward to "deepening its participation" in Mexico's telecoms.
The just-passed reforms "will allow the transformation of the market into one that is more competitive and which encourages investment," the company said in a statement.
The Spanish company that its Movistar phone service carrier currently controls 19 percent of Mexico's cell phone market, a fraction of the share controled by Slim's America Movil.
America Movil includes the fixed line company Telmex and mobile phone carrier Telcel. At present, the former controls 80 percent of its market and the latter, 70 percent.
America Movil said in a statement Tuesday it would sell assets to a "new operator," which it did not identify.
The company has 292 million cell phone users in 26 countries, nearly 74 million of them in Mexico.
Slim, America Movil's billionaire founder, figures regularly on a list of the world's richest men.
He ranked number two after Bill Gates on Forbes magazine's most recent wealth survey this year, with family assets of some $76.1 billon dollars.


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