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Slim May Agree on Telekom Austria Deal Soon, State Holder Says

Talks between Austria and Carlos Slim’s America Movil SAB over forming a shareholder syndicate at Telekom Austria AG may be wrapped up soon, the head of the country’s state holding company said.

A “term sheet” with the most important details will probably be agreed and presented to the holding company’s board by March 28, Rudolf Kemler, the head of OeIAG, told journalists in Vienna today. A contract with America Movil lasting about 10 years may be finalized two to three weeks later, he said.

“I’m confident that we will have a result very soon,” said Kemler, who is also the chairman of Telekom Austria. “The talks so far give reason for optimism.”

A pact with Austria would let America Movil take a friendlier takeover approach compared with last year, when it dropped a bid for shares of Dutch carrier Royal KPN NV after opposition from executives. Austria, which holds 28.4 percent of Telekom Austria and has pledged to keep a blocking minority of 25 percent, would secure lasting influence in the company even as Slim becomes the biggest holder.

America Movil wants to raise its share to more than 30 percent from 26.8 percent to consolidate the company in its accounts, Kemler said. The terms of a takeover offer to minority shareholders, required under Austrian law in case of a pact between syndicates, are still being discussed, he said.

The offer would have to match Telekom Austria’s average share price over the past six months, which was 6.34 euros, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The stock rose 1.1 percent to 7.05 euros at 1:03 p.m. in Vienna.

Mexico City-based America Movil is betting on a European recovery as growth slows in Mexico and Brazil. Its withdrawal from the KPN bid last year fueled speculation that America Movil may increase its stake in Telekom Austria. The Austrian carrier’s shares have risen 28 percent this year.

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