RIO DE JANEIRO, Feb 11 (Reuters) - TIM Participações SA , the Brazilian telephone unit of Telecom Italia SpA , plans to lay off 800 to 1,000 workers as it restructures operations to boost efficiency, a union representing company workers said on Thursday.
Brazilian telecommunications unions have a meeting scheduled for Tuesday to discuss the restructuring, said Luis Antonio Souza, president of SinttelRio and general secretary of Fenattel, a national telecommunications union federation.
TIM Participações has 13,600 workers in Brazil.
"They are in fact doing a restructuring and our estimate is a cut of 800 to 1,000 in various areas, technical, administrative, all areas," Souza said.
The biggest cuts are expected in Sao Paulo and in Rio de Janeiro, where the company is based.
TIM Participações declined to comment on the layoffs, but said it has been carrying out an efficiency plan designed to make ample changes to company procedures since the second half of last year. The plan aims to save 1 billion reais ($252 million) by the end of 2017.
Last week TIM Participações said fourth-quarter net income rose 3.3 per cent compared with a year earlier. Analysts were not impressed by the income growth because it was boosted by the sale of telephone towers and revenue from services actually declined.
The company's stock was down 6.2 percent in afternoon trading in Sao Paulo. It has lost nearly 13 percent this year. ($1 = 3.9758 Brazilian reais) (Reporting by Luciana Bruno; Writing by Jeb Blount; Editing by Matthew Lewis)