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Lenovo downplays RIM acquisition rumors

The company says that it's not necessarily looking to acquire Research In Motion and that its CFO's comments last week were taken out of context.


Lenovo has backed away from speculation that it is planning to acquire Research In Motion.

In an interview last week with Bloomberg, Lenovo Chief Financial Officer Wong Mai Ming said that his company is "looking at all opportunities" as it pertains to acquisitions and that a dialogue is open between RIM and Lenovo.

Soon after, the Web erupted with claims that Lenovo and RIM are talking about a buyout.

However, in a statement e-mailed to CNET today, a Lenovo spokesperson said that Wong's comments were taken out of context:

We are aware that Lenovo's CFO...was speaking broadly about M&A strategy in a recent interview. 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.

RIM has the been the subject of buyout talks for well over a year. Last January, the company was reportedly in discussions with Goldman Sachs to see if the investment bank would help it field buyout offers. That came a week before a report surfaced, saying Samsung was considering acquiring RIM. IBM has also been rumored to be considering an acquisition.

RIM, however, has consistently said that it's focused on the future with BlackBerry 10 and is not worried about possible acquisitions.

On Wednesday, RIM will unveil the long-awaited BlackBerry 10 and discuss its future. CNET will be on hand to cover the launch.