Bloomberg News

Telekom Austria Stock Soars on Report Slim Buying Stake

June 05, 2012

Carlos Slim

Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim speaks at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York. Photographer: Ramin Talie/Bloomberg

Telekom Austria AG rose in Vienna trading after News magazine reported Carlos Slim acquired 4.1 percent of the former telephone monopoly and plans to buy a 21 percent stake held by Ronny Pecik.

Slim, the world’s richest person, acquired the stake in Vienna-based Telekom Austria via Mexican phone company America Movil SAB (AMXL) and plans to pay Pecik 9.50 euros a share, News reported today, without saying where it got the information. Pecik owns the holding in partnership with Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris, who opposes the deal and wants 10 euros a share, News said.

Telekom Austria jumped 4.3 percent to 7.571 euros at the 5:30 p.m. close in the Austrian capital, having risen as much as 10 percent in intraday trading on the report. The gain was the stock’s first in three days. America Movil fell 0.8 percent to 16.34 pesos at 10:38 a.m. in Mexico City.

Sawiris would prefer to sell the stake to Telenor ASA (TEL), which may already hold 3 percent of Telekom Austria, the magazine said.

Austria’s state assets agency, OeIAG, the biggest shareholder in the Austrian phone company with a 28.4 percent stake, backs the plan for the stake sale to Slim, according to the report. Slim and Pecik’s shares would be placed in a company 80 percent owned by Slim, with Pecik holding the remaining 20 percent, News said.

Pecik and Sawiris didn’t return calls seeking comment. America Movil had no immediate comment. Spokesmen for Telekom Austria, OeIAG and Telenor declined to comment on the magazine’s report.

Sawiris said in an interview with Bloomberg last week that he’d be willing to sell his Telekom Austria stake to Slim should Austria’s government prevent a reorganization at the telephone company.

Slim’s son, America Movil Co-Chairman Carlos Slim Domit, said in an interview in late May that the Mexican billionaire sees Europe’s debt crisis as a “good moment” to apply his strategy of investing in times of trouble.

To contact the reporter on this story: Zoe Schneeweiss in Vienna at zschneeweiss@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Foxwell at sfoxwell@bloomberg.net


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