Slim Loses $4.4 Billion as Investors Pan Europe Plans

Billionaire Carlos Slim’s net worth fell by $4.4 billion today as investors rejected the plan by his America Movil SAB to further his foothold in Europe.

The largest wireless carrier in the Americas fell 8.2 percent, the biggest one-day drop since October 2008, in Mexico City after saying it would spend as much as $3.4 billion to buy additional shares of Royal KPN NV. Slim’s net worth fell to $71.9 billion. He remains the richest man in the world, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Slim, 72, is seeking a stake of almost 28 percent in the Netherlands’s former phone monopoly to expand his empire beyond Latin America as subscriber growth begins to slow in Mexico and Brazil. KPN called the offer too low. In the past, Slim had explored acquisitions in Spain and Italy.

“We had hoped the company had given up expanding into Europe and that it would return the excess cash to shareholders,” said Carlos Sequeira, an analyst at Banco BTG Pactual SA in Rio de Janeiro, in a research note today. “It seems this is not the case.”

Slim’s fortune is up 16.7 percent year-to-date.

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