MILAN, Nov 17 (Reuters) - Telecom Italia is not studying a new share sale, it said on Monday, dismissing a press report that it was considering raising cash from investors to fund an acquisition in Brazil.
The board of Telecom Italia is expected to meet this week to discuss options for its majority-owned Brazilian subsidiary, TIM Participacoes (TIM Brasil), two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters last week.
Telecom is looking to strengthen TIM Brasil’s posiition as mobile and fixed line services converge after losing out to Telefonica in a bidding war to buy local broadband company GVT from Vivendi this summer.
Telecom Italia’s chief executive Marco Patuano said last week he was ready to explore the possibility of buying rival Brazilian telecoms operator Grupo Oi.
Italian daily Il Messaggero then said on Saturday that Patuano would seek a “broad mandate” from shareholders at a board meeting on Friday to negotiate a tie-up with Oi. The plan includes the possibility of selling new shares, the paper said without citing sources.
“Regarding news published by the daily press over the last few days, Telecom Italia stresses it is not studying any capital increases,” the company said in a brief statement on Monday.
Shares in Telecom Italia were down 1 percent at 0.892 euros by 0831 GMT, when Milan’s blue-chip stock index was down 0.3 percent. (Reporting by Valentina Za; Editing by Greg Mahlich)