Mexico's dominant telecommunications company, Teléfonos de México (Telmex), firmly established itself as a polished, global issuer when it placed three-quarters of its $1 billion five-year bond with US high-grade investors in November. LatinFinance recognizes this benchmark bond as International Corporate Bond of the Year for placing Telmex in the high-grade universe, halving its cost of borrowing in the international markets in just two years, and issuing the largest Latin American corporate bond in 2003. Alfonso Cerezo, Telmex's chief financial officer, says, "We had no doubts about Telmex's ability to qualify as an investment grade company. If you compare our numbers to any other telecommunications company in the world, ours are better in all cases."
Telmex is building on financial strength that most US telcos would die for. Its robust financial health and the scarcity of its name enabled it to mimic the issuing...
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