Billionaire Slim telcos bullish on the much sought-after TV license in Mexico

MEXICO CITY (reuters) – America Movil, the telecoms giant controlled by the family of billionaire Carlos Slim, it is still bullish that it will receive a licence for the provision of television in Mexico, it’s a price that has eluded it for nearly three decades.

FILE PHOTO, Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim looks on during a press conference in Mexico City, Mexico, on April 16, 2018. REUTERS/Henry Romero/File Photo

America Movil has the TV markets in Latin America, the company is exempted from the provision of the service in his home country of Mexico, ever since the privatization of the state telecoms company, Telmex, in the beginning of the 1990s, which gave rise to the industry’s juggernaut.

In October of last year, an America Movil subsidiary, filed an application for a pay-TV license by Mexico’s Federal Telecommunications Institute (IFT). While many people feel that the company’s share of the market, it is still too high, and the IFT has not given any indication of the decision it will take, the senior executives have expressed optimism in recent months that the matter was quickly resolved in their favor.

“I think that we will soon hear a final definition of ministry that will bring with it, not if, but when will we be able to start using the service,” America Movil Chief Financial Officer Carlos Garcia Moreno said at an event hosted by Goldman Sachs last week, according to a recording obtained by Reuters.

Although Garcia Moreno, refers to the Ministry of Communications and Transportation (SCT), and the decision will be taken by the IFT.

An America Movil spokesman, declined to comment on the record. The notes that were previously issued by the Mexican newspaper El Universal.

Prior to the approval or disapproval of the request, the supervisor of the board must vote on the recommendation of the staff. This recommendation has not yet been received by the board, a source at the regulator said.

The company has filed with the application a short time after the victory of the Mexican President, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, who has a long history of co-operation with Smart.

While the final decision is made by the IFT, an independent regulatory body, the senior members of Lopez Obrador’s administration had already told Reuters that they are open for the rendering of America Movil, of the license.

In spite of more and more consumers are embracing streaming, America Movil, is impatient to meet his rivals in peddling the triple-play packages that combine phone, internet and TV company on the grounds that the penetration of pay TV in Mexico is still low.

If a license has been issued, the Telmex network is ready to provide TELEVISION to the consumer, within a maximum period of six months, a person close to the Telmex said.

The America Movil subsidiary, has plans to invest approximately 6.03 billion pesos ($305.95 million) that offer the service, according to a document filed in court by the SCT in November, which was obtained by Reuters.

But the company’s critics fear is that it will give America Movil a TV license, it will dash any hopes of a loosening of the grip on the market. Five years after the telecom reforms with a view to the promotion of the competition, America Movil still has close to two-thirds of the cell lines, in Mexico, in accordance with the IFT of the data.

“As a mobile unit Telcel’s market share has fallen to less than 50%, I was able to see clearly… to provide an incentive for the America Movil a TV licence,” said Roger Entner, an analyst at Recon Analytics. “You know, I don’t think it (the market), it is all in what the regulators would expect.”

By contrast, America Movil frames of a pay-TV license, as a way of boosting competition in the market, with its chief rival, Televisa’s royalty.

“The pay-TV market is highly concentrated,… which indicates the importance of the generation of a level playing field,” America Movil said in a statement.

Reporting by Julia Love; Editing by Frank Jack Daniel and Alistair Bell

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