Are newspapers, even after the impressive collapse in stock prices, still overvalued? Goldman Sachs (and just about everyone else) thinks that they are. Mexican billionaire and world’s second richest man Carlos Slim Helu begs to differ.
The Mexican telecommunications mogul, whose net worth approaches $60 billion, has taken a 6.4% stake in the New York Times company. Slim bought 9.1 million shares for $127 million.
Is this another case of fools rushing in? In the case of most newspapers, it would be. But Slim has a storied history of buying depressed shares at a discount and turning a healthy profit. And our parent company agrees with him, having recently made its own offer for the New York Times:
In recent years, [Slim] has acquired stakes in several companies in the United States, where he has not been known to take a direct role. Those companies have included Saks, owner of the Saks Fifth Avenue stores; the tobacco company Altria; and the telecommunications company Global Crossing.
In 2004, he became the largest shareholder in MCI, the troubled long-distance carrier, and made a healthy profit the next year when Verizon took over MCI.