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Telefonica Bids $9.8 Billion for GVT to Block Telecom Italia

Telefonica SA raised its offer for Vivendi SA’s GVT unit to 7.45 billion euros ($9.8 billion), escalating a takeover battle with Telecom Italia SpA for one of Brazil’s fastest-growing broadband providers.

Telefonica’s proposal, 11 percent more than a previous one it made on Aug. 5, includes 4.66 billion euros in cash, the Madrid-based carrier said today. Minutes before, Milan-based Telecom Italia announced a 7 billion-euro offer consisting of stock and about 1.7 billion euros of cash. Both companies want to combine GVT with their own Brazilian mobile-phone units.