UPDATE 4-Telecom Italia mulls Brazil options as Telefonica bids for GVT

miércoles 6 de agosto de 2014 13:58 GYT

* Telefonica bid for GVT may force Telecom Italia to react

* T.Italia CEO says won't make "crazy" acquisitions in Brazil

* Possible deal with GVT, sale of TIM Brasil remain options

* Shareholder Fossati calls for GVT/TIM Brasil merger (add shareholder calling for GVT/TIM merger, shares)

By Danilo Masoni and Stefano Rebaudo

MILAN, Aug 6 (Reuters) - Italy's biggest phone company Telecom Italia said on Wednesday it was considering all its options in Brazil, including the possibility of an acquisition that would rival its top investor Telefonica .

On Tuesday, Spain's Telefonica made a surprise 6.7 billion euro ($9 billion) bid for Vivendi's Brazilian broadband unit GVT. The Italian firm, meanwhile, has not ruled out the possibility of merging GVT with its own TIM Brasil to bolster its broadband base.

Brazil accounts for about one-third of Telecom Italia's revenues. In spite of a recent economic slowdown, the market in the Latin American country continues to be its main engine for growth as Italy struggles to emerge from a long recession.

Weighed down by a heavy debt pile and the need to make costly network upgrades, Telecom Italia has refrained from making the first move in the consolidating Brazilian market, but Telefonica's offer for GVT could force it to react.   Continuación...