State Reacquires 10% Stake in Telefónica, Sparking Ownership Changes and Diplomatic Tensions

SEPI acquires Telefónica shares, becoming 3% of company ownership

The State has reacquired a 10% stake in Telefónica 26 years after divesting. This was in response to the Saudi STC purchasing 9.9% of the company’s shares, causing tension. The order to buy shares came from the State Society of Industrial Participations (SEPI) following the government’s decision. SEPI already holds a 3% stake in Telefónica, and the recent acquisition will bring the total to 10%, costing around 700 million euros.

The process of acquiring the shares has been ongoing for days, but it was officially announced on Monday. Coincidentally, CaixaBank reduced its stake in Telefónica from 3.51% to 2.51% around the same time. Telefónica confirmed that SEPI’s purchase aligns with the government’s goal of acquiring a 10% stake. While CaixaBank has reduced its position, Criteria expects to increase its percentage through further acquisitions.

The entry of Saudi STC into Telefónica’s capital raised questions about its intentions, as they continue to remain silent on their plans. Both Telefónica and STC have not provided further information about the situation. The State’s resurgence as a shareholder aims to stabilize shares and ensure a strategic position in the company. The ongoing developments surrounding ownership changes in Telefónica continue to unfold, with many factors remaining uncertain.

In recent years, there have been numerous ownership changes in Telefónica, with various entities purchasing stakes in the company. However, this latest move by the State marks a significant development in the company’s ownership structure.

The Saudi STC’s investment in Telefónica sparked tensions between Spain and Saudi Arabia over concerns about national security and data privacy.

Despite these concerns, both countries have maintained diplomatic relations and worked together to resolve any issues that may arise.

As for Telefónica itself, it remains unclear how this latest development will impact its operations and future growth prospects.

However, one thing is certain – ownership changes are becoming increasingly commonplace in today’s global business landscape.

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