BRASILIA, Dec 14 (Reuters) - Brazilian paper and pulp maker Suzano Papel e Celulose SA is considering buying a minority stake in rival producer Fibria Celulose SA, Suzano chief executive Walter Schalka told newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo.
The companies are not yet in formal talks for the purchase of a 29 percent stake currently owned by the Ermirio de Moraes family, Schalka said.
However, Suzano has discussed the potential deal with consultants, Estado reported, citing unnamed sources.
Spokesmen at Suzano and Fibria were not immediately available to comment on the report.
Fibria’s total market value is worth about 27.7 billion reais ($7.2 billion), according to Thomson Reuters data, suggesting the Ermirio de Moraes’ stake in Fibria is worth nearly 8 billion reais. The Estado report did not offer an estimate of the potential deal.
Fibria has been one of the few positive stories in corporate Brazil, where an economic recession and a widespread corruption scandal has hurt most companies. It has been recently upgraded to investment grade by all three major rating agencies and is looking for merger and acquisition options, Fibria’s chief executive Marcelo Castelli said earlier this month.
$1 = 3.8723 Brazilian reais Reporting by Silvio Cascione; Editing by Mark Potter