(Adds quotes and regulatory context)
By Christine Murray
MEXICO CITY, Oct 24 (Reuters) - Mexican telecoms company America Movil hopes to complete a planned asset sale and a spin-off of its cellular towers in Mexico in 2015, Chief Executive Daniel Hajj said on Friday.
The company, which is controlled by the family of Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim, is in the midst of a regulatory crackdown in its home market which forces it to open up its infrastructure for use by competitors.
In response to the rules, the company said in July it would spin-off its telecoms towers and sell assets to reach a market share below the 50 percent threshold set by the regulator.
“We feel that in the first quarter, maybe at the beginning of the second quarter of next year, we feel we can have done all the spin off,” Hajj said of the cellular towers.
The planned sale of assets, which is designed to help it to avoid some tough new regulations imposed under a sweeping sector reform, would also probably happen in 2015, though the company was not in a hurry to do so, Hajj added.
“We are not disclosing what and how we are going to sell, that’s what were discussing at this moment with each one of the companies,” he said.
Slim himself said in July that he hoped the asset sale would be carried out soon, noting that “for us, six months isn’t fairly quickly, it’s slow.”
Shares in America Movil were down 1.92 percent at 15.83 pesos at 1030 Mexico time (1530 GMT) after the call.
Mexico’s telecoms regulator, the Federal Telecommunications Institute (IFT), said this week it had not yet received a plan from America Movil on the asset sale.
If the IFT accepts the plan presented, some regulations placed specifically on America Movil for holding a dominant position in the market would disappear, Hajj said.
The company also said it is not participating in the bid process for two new free-to-air TV channels in Mexico.
Germany’s Manager Magazin said this week America Movil was a possible buyer of T-Mobile US, citing people familiar with Deutsche Telekom, which owns close to 67 percent of the company.
“We are not talking with anybody at this stage so I don’t have any comment on that,” Hajj said. (Reporting by Christine Murray; editing by Andrew Hay)