America Movil, on Friday unveiled a $9.6 billion unsolicited bid to purchase the majority stake in Dutch Royal KPN, that it does not already own. The bid possibly halts the proposed sale of the German unit of KPN and creates a European stronghold for the phone company from Mexico.
America Movil from Mexico City, said it was offering a 20% premium to the Thursday closing price of the stock, which is well below the per share price it just paid to recently boost its holding in KPN to almost 30%.
The company announced that its intention was to acquire the majority stake in KPN to facilitate greater co-ordination and co-operation between both companies, in order to exploit all potential areas of partnerships and to intensify the synergy potential for both of the companies.
The phone company in Mexico is controlled by Carlos Slim, the billionaire who stormed earlier this year into Europe hoping to earn money in promising markets with undervalued companies.
Slim is the richest man in the world. He picked up a 24% share in Telekom Austria along with building the investment in Dutch KPN.
Analysts had hoped the financier could use the deep pockets of Slim and broad experience in telecom to help KPN, which is foundering. However, he only had started to become comfortable in Holland, when he reportedly became irked at the cash and stock value KPN recently entered into an agreement with for its German E-Plus unit to Telefonica from Spain.
On Friday, the Mexican company said that it was carefully evaluating the value of the proposed transaction and would make a determination in exercising its voting rights at the upcoming general meeting for KPN. It offered little if any hint of its opinion over the agreement of E-Plus.
Even if it were to support the sale, the competition and phone regulators in Germany have already expressed some displeasure in agreement.