* Q4 profit 14.962 bln pesos vs 16.307 bln pesos yr ago
* Revenue down 1.1 percent at 198 bln pesos
MEXICO CITY Feb 12 America Movil, Latin
America's biggest phone company, on Tuesday reported an 8.2
percent drop in fourth-quarter profit, missing analysts'
expectations, as revenue fell due to currency weakness outside
The company, owned by the world's richest man, Carlos Slim,
said fourth-quarter profit slipped to 14.962 billion pesos
($1.16 billion) from 16.307 billion pesos a year ago.
That compares to an expected profit of 24.131 billion pesos,
according to a Reuters survey of analysts.
Fourth-quarter revenue fell 1.1 percent to 198 billion
Profit was also hurt by a 346 million peso loss from
investments in other companies, in part due to recent
acquisitions in Europe. That loss compared to a 4.5 million peso
quarterly loss in investments last year.
Still, the company said it added 5.6 million mobile
subscribers in the fourth quarter to end the year with 19.8
million subscribers, up 18.4 percent from 2011.
At constant exchange rates, America Movil said its service
revenue was up 5.2 percent year on year.
The company will hold a conference call to discuss its
results with analysts on Wednesday.
Slim's phone companies enjoy dominant positions in Mexico,
where the cash they generate has helped fuel capital investments
and a recent European acquisition spree.
The company started rolling out 4G services in Mexico at the
end of last year, using long-term evolution (LTE) technology
that boosts average speeds on wireless devices to 20 Mb from a
current range of 3 Mb to 5 Mb.
Last year, America Movil also built up stakes in two
European phone companies, accumulating a 26 percent holding in
Telekom Austria and a nearly 28 percent stake in Dutch
But unlike Slim's Telcel and Telmex, which have 70 percent
and 80 percent, respectively, of Mexico's mobile and fixed-line
markets, KPN and Telekom Austria face fierce competition in
their local markets.
Telekom Austria shares rose 4.3 percent in the fourth
quarter but are down 9 percent this year, and the company has
warned its profit could fall further on tough competition.
KPN shares fell 37.5 percent in the fourth quarter and are
down a further 15.7 percent this year.
Regulators in Mexico have been trying to increase
supervision of Slim's dominant America Movil and Telefonos de
Mexico (Telmex) with limited success.
Mexico's competition commission earlier this month announced
it will fine America Movil's Mexico-based home-phone service
Telmex about $50 million for blocking a rival phone company from
accessing its network.