January 28, 1940
Born In: Mexico City, Mexico
Education: Civil Engineering from the National Autonomous University of Mexico
Career: Chairman and CEO (Telmex, Telcel and América Móvil)
‘A man with moneyed fortune’…it actually describes Carlos best. Carlos Slim Helú, a tycoon in the telecommunications industry, was born on 28 January 1940 in Mexico City, Mexico. This Mexican businessman is acclaimed to the world’s second richest man with a net worth of US $60 billion (approx.) by his holdings. Helú dominates the telecommunication industry in Mexico and considerably in Latin America too. He is the Chairman and CEO of companies, like Teléfonos de México (Telmex), Telcel and América Móvil.
Carlos was the youngest boy amongst six siblings born to his father and mother, Julian Slim and Dona Linda Helu. Both the parents instilled good values in children and made them realized the value of money. Since Julian was doing well with his dry goods store and became a prominent businessman in Mexico, Carlos had a great fortune to his name from the very beginning. When he was barely 13 years old, Dona Linda left for the heaven, and then Carlos added ‘Helu’ - the surname of his mother, to his official name. He did civil engineering from the National Autonomous University of Mexico.
In 1965, Carlos started erecting the foundations of Grupo Carso, which was incorporated in January 1966. Three months later, he married Soumaya Domit, and the couple together, had six children. Since 1980s, Slim Helu has been an eminent businessman in many industrial, real estate and commercial fields. When Mexico was undergoing a financial crisis in 1982, Carlos decided to invest greatly in the market. His planned investments brought really good results. By 1985, Grupo Carso got control over companies, like Artes Gráficas Unidas, Fábricas de Papel Loreto y Peña Pobre, and also a major stake in Sanborns, and Dennys.
In 1986, he acquired Minera FRISCO and Empresas, along with their affiliates. The Euzkadi tire company, a sensation in business at the time, also came under the control of Carlos. In 1990, Grupo Carso also got hold of Telmex in joint venture with SBC and France Telecom, and started a new era of industrial development in the global sector. Within 15 years, Telmex developed into a world-class technological stand through its optimized processes. America Movil, started in 1996, became a pioneer and international innovator of cellular prepayment systems.
After working so hard for so many years, Carlos has left most of his companies’ boards and his sons are looking after the business on regular terms. Now, he is only serving as the Chairman of Impulsora del Desarrollo y el Empleo en América Latina, Fundación Telmex, Fundación Carso, Consejo Consultivo de Restauración del Centro Histórico, and Fundación del Centro Histórico. On 5 Mar’ 2008, Forbes magazine declared Carlos Slim Helú as the world's second-richest person, subsequent to Warren Buffett.
He was reported to surpass Bill Gates in terms of wealth by the Fortune Magazine and the Wall Street Journal in August 2007. As regards his achievements, Carlos had been vice-president of the Mexican Stock Exchange and president of the Mexican Association of Brokerage Houses. Mr. Slim also got the credit of being the first president of the Latin-American Committee of the New York Stock Exchange Administration Council. Undoubtedly, he rules the telecom industry, and presently 90% of telephone lines in Mexico come under Telmex.
Telcel, the mobile company controlled by Slim, maneuvers about 80% of all the cellphones in Mexico. Carlos has been applauded several times for his contribution towards technology. Like Mexico's Chamber of Commerce honored him with the Entrepreneurial Merit Medal, the Belgian Government awarded him the Leopold II Commander Meda; the Latin Trade business magazine pleased him by announcing him CEO of the year (2003), and CEO of the decade. Since 2001, Slim has been Chairman of the Executive Committee for the Restoration of the Historic Center.
Furthermore, Carlos controls the Latin America Development Fund project for his love for philanthropic work. He is a great lover of art and nature too. Being an aficionado of base ball, Slim Helu has written numerous articles about the sport. On 5 March 2008, Forbes magazine affirmed Carlos Slim Helu as the second-richest man in the world, while Warren Buffett excelling at the first.