Brazil’s second largest mobile operator, TIM Participacoes, described the hiring of investment bank Bradesco to study alternative strategies as “routine”, in the latest signal of operator manoeuvres ahead of likely consolidation in the market.
In a securities filing, TIM said bringing Bradesco and other advisers on board “did not constitute a mandate to evaluate a bid to buy Oi”.
Bloomberg previously said TIM had hired the investment bank to negotiate the acquisition of rival Oi, Brazil’s fourth largest operator and leading fixed player.
The same report said that Oi itself had taken on another investment bank in August — Banco BTG Pactual — to advise about a potential move for Telecom Italia’s stake in TIM Participacoes.
It has been reported that Oi is looking for potential partners for any TIM bid.
The resignation earlier this week of Oi’s CEO Zeinal Bava has paved the way for the break-up of the operator’s proposed merger with Portugal Telecom, so leaving Oi free to join in Brazil’s consolidation.
Bava’s resignation will have also given a boost to Altice which is reported to be interested in buying Portugal Telecom, as it seeks to build up an integrated cable and mobile strategy across Europe.