Carlos Slim Helu

Born: January 28, 1940, Mexico | Successful For: Business Magnate (Telmex) | Zodiac Sign: Aquarius

Carlos Slim Helu inspiration

Inner Keys to Success:

  • FIND OPPORTUNITIES AND ATTRACT MONEY: The first ‘World’s Richest Man’ from a developing nation, Carlos Slim is a money magnet. He was always aware of when an opportunity would come his way, and acted when he saw it every time. To attract business ideas like Carlos, one must train the mind to think positive thoughts about money. Carlos and his siblings were taught basic business practices by their father (successful businessman) about tracking income and expenses and giving them a savings book to track weekly allowance. At 12, he had already bought shares in a Mexican bank. Upon working for his father’s company, Carlos went on to study engineering at National Autonomous University and would later teach there too. At 25, he incorporated and invested in many companies and the following year he was already worth $40 million. The main focus of his early businesses included construction, real estate and mining companies. His most successful venture is América Móvil, which in 2010 was Latin America’s largest established mobile-phone carrier and had accounted for around $49 billion of his wealth. A master at numbers and a very aggressive businessman who has an instinct for growth. Just before Apple introduced its iMac line, Carlos Slim brilliantly bought 3% of Apple Inc’s stock. His abundant and optimistic mindset has allowed him to reach the top of the food chain as he states “Do not allow negative feelings and emotions to control your mind. Emotional harm does not come from others; it is conceived and developed within ourselves.” 
  • FOCUS ON SOLVING PROBLEMS, NOT MONEY: A natural born problem solver and he learned to trust his abilities. “I think sometimes when you are successful in business, you have others trying to turn public opinion against you because they are trying to compete with you.” When interviewed on Larry King, Carlos stated that money is not his goal and becoming the richest in the world is not a competition. He just wants to be the good businessman he is. He deflected all the questions about being the richest and turned it to be about solutions. Carlos Slim has a strong knack for looking into the deeper aspect to fix problems rather than focus on just money. Even with charities, he states “Our concept is more to accomplish and solve things, rather than giving, that is, not going around like Santa Claus. Poverty isn’t solved with donations.” Being the richest man, Carlos feels the need to solve global issue and improving the quality of life for others on the planet. “It’s an economic activity and to take out poverty it’s the best investment any person or a person can do in any place because poverty used to be an ethical issue, used to be a social justice but now it’s an economic need. You need to integrate these people that are marginal and are in poverty; you need to integrate them into modernity.”  He now lets his sons take over and narrows his time to discussing ways of improving the world with other bright minds.“When you live for others’ opinions, you are dead. I don’t want to live thinking about how I’ll be remembered.”
  • HAVE AN ULTIMATE GAME-PLAN TO HELP THE WORLD: Carlos is very humble and down to earth regardless of how successful he became. He rarely spends much money on lavish items, does not wear designer clothes or buy fancy yachts. He even drives his own car and has very few properties on the globe. He is known as a huge  philanthropist “I’ve always said that the better off you are, the more responsibility you have for helping others. Just as I think it’s important to run companies well, with a close eye to the bottom line, I think you have to use your entrepreneurial experience to make corporate philanthropy”. In 95 he established Fundación Telmex, which is a broad-ranging philanthropic foundation. Carlos also created a non-profit philanthropic foundation which was announced to have an asset base of $4 billion. He focuses his not for profit charities on the arts, education, health care, sports and the downtown restoration in Mexico City. His philanthropic contributions have increased dramatically since the 90’s and he heads up the Latin America Development Fund. This fund invests in the things he believes will make a difference. Carlos has said “I think that anything that has privileges has responsibility. All this is responsibility and compromise.” He also partnered with Khan Academy which offers free online videos that cover a wide variety of subjects for children of all ages. The educational alliance offers free access to world-class education for Mexico and the Latin America population. A secret to success: GIVE! Whatever the talent, use it to better the world.

Carlos Slim inspirational story

“Money is not a goal. The goal is to make companies grow, develop, be competitive, be in different areas, be efficient to have a great human team inside the company”

 – Carlos Slim

Inspiring Fact:

Mexico had a reliance on oil exports which fell and interest rates rose worldwide. Banks and other businesses were crippled and collapsed, the peso was devalued. Carlos then made an entrepreneur mastermind decision, he began investing heavily. He was such a go getter that he would buy large percentages of many Mexican businesses. “When we decide to do something, we do it quickly.” He was so ambitious and bold that he even moved into financial services and many other ventures. In 1990, he made his wisest decision to buy a landline telephony company called Telemex from the Mexican government. Carlos was such a versatile entrepreneur that he would even take a 6.4% stake in The New York Times Company. His interest includes one of Mexico’s most important banks, airline, a mining company, hotels, construction, insurance companies, a bottling company, cigarette manufacturer, much real estate and much more. “I think the wealth should be reinvested to create more wealth. The fruit of wealth is income and it is important to develop the distribution of income.”


 “All times are good time for those who know how to work and have the tools to do so.”

 – Carlos Slim Helu


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