Mexico’s Richest Man Confronts a New Foe: The State That Helped Make Him Rich

Slim said the new law established a certainty that all businessmen appreciate. But he bristled at the notion that his company required special regulation, or that it had stalled or impeded regulation in the past.
Slim said the new law established a certainty that all businessmen appreciate. But he bristled at the notion that his company required special regulation, or that it had stalled or impeded regulation in the past.

By Azam Ahmed, Randal C. Archibald and Elizabeth Malkin / New York Times

All is not well in the kingdom of Carlos Slim.

For more than 25 years, he has dictated the terms of Mexico’s telecommunications industry and built an empire, making him one of the world’s richest men.

Slim and his family are billionaires 50 times over. He has stood at the very top of the Forbes World’s Billionaires list — more than once. His flush years in Mexico enabled him to span the Americas with companies that touch nearly every facet of modern life: telecom, banking, construction, retail and media, among others.

But at home in Mexico, the game is changing. And there is not much he can do about it, analysts say.

Determined to bring his dominance to an end, leaders from Mexico’s three biggest political parties have put aside their own animosities in recent years, meeting in secret sessions to chip away at Slim’s domain.

Now, the plan they concocted to increase competition in the telecommunications industry, signed into law two years ago, is starting to bite.

Profits for Slim’s flagship company, América Móvil, are in steep decline, falling 24 percent in 2015 and almost 44 percent in the first six months of this year, compared with the year-earlier periods. A closely watched metric of profitability on Wall Street has also fallen, and the company’s stock has dropped by 39 percent in the past year.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/08/10/world/americas/mexicos-carlos-slim-helu.html

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