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Billionaire Slim Looks to Mexican Prisons for Ideal’s Growth

Billionaire Carlos Slim is entering the business of managing Mexican prisons to expand the investments of his construction-financing company.

Along with Slim’s bank Grupo Financiero Inbursa SAB, the builder, known as Ideal, is acquiring stakes in two federal prisons from Desarrolladora Homex SAB. The homebuilder said it would receive about 4 billion pesos ($326 million) from Slim’s companies under the agreement.

While Homex plans to keep working on the operation of the two prisons, Ideal would also participate, Inbursa Chairman Marco Antonio Slim said in an e-mail. That would add prisons to the portfolio of assets managed by the construction company, including toll roads, hydroelectric dams and water-treatment facilities.

Marco Antonio Slim, a son of the billionaire, didn’t provide further details, and representatives of Mexico City-based Ideal had no immediate comment.

Ideal, whose formal name is Impulsora del Desarrollo y el Empleo en America Latina SAB, was unchanged at 26.20 pesos at the close in Mexico City. Culiacan, Mexico-based Homex, which is using the deal to pay down debt and fund working capital, gained 40 percent to 16.89 pesos.

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