Reuters reports that Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim says he could exercise stock warrants in The New York Times Company (NYT) which expire in January 2015, a move that would more than double his stake in the media giant.
Slim, the world’s second-richest person, has stock warrants that entitle him to buy 15.9 million Times Co. class A shares at $6.36 apiece. He currently owns 8% of common shares, which would increase to about 17% if he exercises the warrants, according to a Reuters calculation using the NYT’s latest SEC filing.
“The option is a lower price, I’m sure we should exercise the option, but we look at it like a financial investment that has been very good,” the 74-year-old billionaire told the publication in an interview at his offices in Mexico City late on Thursday.
Slim, who is already NYT’s second-largest shareholder, obtained the warrants in 2009 as part of a deal he made with the paper to loan it $250 million during the height of the global financial crisis. At the time, many big city newspapers reported plunges in ad revenue. The Times repaid the loan almost three years ago.
Shares of The New York Times closed at $14.43 on Friday.