Vodafone reportedly uninterested in TI's Brazilian unit

|About: Vodafone Group Plc (VOD)|By:, SA News Editor

A source tells Bloomberg Vodafone (VOD) is uninterested in acquiring TIM Participacoes (TSU), Telecom Italia's (TI) Brazilian unit.

There had been speculation Vodafone, set to be flush with Verizon Wireless cash, would make a bid for TIM, which TI is looking to unload following the Telefonica/Telco deal and the resignation of CEO Franco Bernabe (who wanted to hold onto Tim). AT&T is viewed as another potential acquirer.

Meanwhile, Egyptian billionaire Naguib Sawiris, who once wanted to buy a stake in TI, now has a 1.2M-share short position in the Italian carrier. Reuters reports Sawiris believes TI will soon be hit by a credit downgrade - S&P just put the Italian carrier on watch for one - and considers it unlikely TI will be able to sell TIM before needing to raise fresh capital.