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Lenovo plays down RIM buyout rumours

PC giant Lenovo is downplaying a recent report that the company is looking to acquire BlackBerry manufacturer Research In Motion.

The rumour spread on Friday following a Bloomberg report that cited Lenovo chief financial officer, Wong Waiming, as saying that the company is "looking at all opportunities - RIM and many others." In a statement on Monday morning, Lenovo said it does not comment on mergers and acquisition rumours or speculation, but clarified Waiming's statement.

"We are aware that Lenovo's CFO Waiming was speaking broadly about M&A strategy in a recent interview," the company said. "RIM was raised as a potential target by the journalist and Mr. Wong repeatedly answered in a manner consistent with all of our previous statements on M&A strategy: Lenovo is very focused on growing its business, both organically and through M&A. When inorganic ideas arise, we explore them to see if there is a strategic fit.

Meanwhile, RIM also issued a statement about the report, but did not directly address the possible Lenovo bid. The company said it is focused at this time on the delivery of its long-awaited BlackBerry 10 operating system, which will be unveiled at a press event tomorrow, 30 January.

"As [RIM CEO Thorsten Heins] said on our most recent results conference call on December 20th, we continue to examine all available options to 'create new opportunities, focusing on areas where we will be more effective partnering rather than going it alone, and ultimately maximizing value for all stakeholders,'" RIM said in a statement, according to The Next Web. "We do not have anything new to report on our strategic review at this time."

RIM last year hired bankers from JPMorgan and RBC Capital to help evaluate its strategic options after facing several disappointing financial quarters in a row as it struggles to deal with the popularity of Apple's iPhone and smartphones based on Google's Android.