United Spirits chief Mallya not sure of Diageo deal

GREATER NOIDA, India Sat Oct 27, 2012 2:53am EDT

Kingfisher Airlines Chairman Vijay Mallya speaks on a mobile phone amid his security personnel on guard during a meeting with the debt-laden airline's pilots in New Delhi March 15, 2012. REUTERS/Parivartan Sharma

Kingfisher Airlines Chairman Vijay Mallya speaks on a mobile phone amid his security personnel on guard during a meeting with the debt-laden airline's pilots in New Delhi March 15, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Parivartan Sharma

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GREATER NOIDA, India (Reuters) - Indian liquor baron Vijay Mallya does not know whether a deal for UK drinks giant Diageo Plc (DGE.L) to take a stake in his United Spirits Ltd (UNSP.NS) will be struck or not, he said on Saturday.

Mallya has been scrambling to raise funds for his ailing Kingfisher Airlines Ltd (KING.NS), and has been in talks with the maker of Johnnie Walker whisky and Smirnoff vodka to sell a stake in United Spirits.

"Whenever we need to say something we will, we keep discussing but we don't know whether a deal will happen or not," Mallya told Reuters on the sidelines of the Indian Grand Prix, which he flew in from London to attend.

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin; Editing by Daniel Magnowski)

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