BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- Few business magnates have made the move from unknown to revered as well as Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim Helu has over the last few years. The world's richest man in 2010, Carlos Slim Helu (better known as just Carlos Slim) has gained the world's spotlight after rocketing to the top of Forbes' richest list in recent years.Slim's standing as the world's richest man is a major milestone. With a fortune estimated to be around $53 billion, Slim is the first billionaire from an emerging economy to take the distinction as the world's richest. Slim's business domination in Mexico is impressive; with interests ranging from financial institutions to construction firms to grocery stores, this son of a Lebanese immigrant has a personal wealth that weighs in at 7% of his country's annual economic output. Unlike many foreign business giants, many of Slim's biggest stakes -- including America Movil ( AMX) and Telmex ( TMX) -- are familiar names to American investors. Likewise, Slim is a major shareholder in a handful of American stocks. Here's a look at Carlos Slim's U.S. portfolio. It's impossible to discuss Carlos Slim's holdings without delving deeper into America Movil and Telmex. The companies, which Slim purchased from the Mexican government in 1990 with a team of other investors (when America Movil was a division of Telmex), hold significant control of the markets in which they operate -- America Movil ranks as the largest mobile phone carrier in Latin America with more than 201 million wireless subscribers; Telmex provides internet service to 80% of connected Mexican households as well as more than 90% of the country's fixed-line phone business. This year, a deal was announced that would merge the two firms once again, only this time, larger America Movil would be the parent company in the transaction. The massive growth of these two companies throughout Latin America in the last two decades is the primary reason for Carlos Slim's massive fortune today. But his large stakes in American firms stand to make him even wealthier in the next decade.
|Who Else Owns America Movil?|
In 2008, Slim began buying shares of New York Times ( NYT), eventually becoming the media firm's largest shareholder outside of the Sulzberger family. At present, Slim's nearly 10 million shares are valued at more than $90 million.The move was an interesting one for Slim because of its timing. The billionaire bought shares of the troubled stock during one of the worst bear markets in the market's history. He's since increased his stakes in the stock, making a $250 million loan to Times last year in an attempt to improve the company's liquidity amid declining revenues and waning profitability. Efforts to better monetize Times' online properties will come to bare in 2011, when the company adopts a paid model for NYTimes.com. New York Times' fortunes are far from certain at the moment, but a tough market for print media and a highly leveraged balance sheet will continue to plague investors who are hoping for a more bullish perspective on the stock. At least they've got one of the world's most prescient investors in their corner. Carlos Slim Helu also owns a stake in Philip Morris International ( PM), a company for which he is also a director. According to filings with the SEC, Slim's stake in the company is estimated to be around $16 million. Philip Morris is a major player in the tobacco industry, with almost 16% of the world's cigarette market. The company, which spun off from Altria ( MO) back in 2008, owns the international rights to some of the world's most well-known tobacco brands, including Marlboro, Parliament and L&M. But the flagship is clearly Marlboro, a storied name that contributed 35% of Philip Morris International's sales volume last year. This company's biggest focus right now is in the emerging markets. While Western Europe currently contributes around half of Philip Morris' revenue, Europe's tight regulation and oversaturated market are proving to be a challenging environment to operate in. Cigarette growth in markets such as China is much more appealing -- the company's joint venture with China National Tobacco should give them an appealing "in" to the Chinese marketplace.
|Who Else Owns Philip Morris?|
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