Carlos Slim, the world's second- richest man, agreed to become the biggest shareholder in Spanish builder Fomento de Construcciones & Contratas as part of a capital increase that will be used to cut the construction company's debt.
Mr Slim's holding company will acquire about 26 percent of FCC, while controlling shareholder Esther Koplowitz and her family will own about 22 percent, the Barcelona-based builder said in a regulatory filing. The shares rose as much as 6.2 percent to the highest in about four months.
FCC shareholders met a week ago to approve the €1bn capital increase to partly refinance a payment-in-kind loan that was put in place as a stop-gap measure this year as part of an almost 5 billion-euro restructuring.
The company, which sold assets and cut jobs to stem more than two years of losses, now gets most of its earnings from environmental services such as waste management after moving away from the construction industry.
Slim will invest as much as 700 million euros in FCC, he and Koplowitz said in a statement. Slim said he will keep the stake for at least four years.
FCC has a market value of about 2 billion euros.
Much like in Ireland, Spanish construction has been stagnant for several years but it has begun to revive recently.
The huge number of properties that will be sold at bottom dollar prices have attracted investors from around the world.
Few however have directly invested in construction there.Most buyers have preffered to build portfolios.(Bloomberg)
Sunday Indo Business