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stc Group announces that it has acquired a 9.9% stake in Telefónica, one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world, for a total consideration of SAR 8.5 billion (EUR 2.1 billion). Telefónica holds a significant presence in Spain, Germany, the UK and Brazil.

This acquisition represents another milestone in stc Group’s expansion and growth strategy and reflects stc Group’s confidence in Telefónica’s sustainable growth and upside potential. Telefónica benefits from a unique portfolio of best-in-class infrastructure assets and cutting-edge technology platforms, where it is developing state-of-the-art capabilities in adjacent areas such as cognitive intelligence, edge computing and IoT (Internet of Things).

stc Group’s growth strategy has resulted in a number of investments in the Information, Communication and Technology sector inside Saudi Arabia and globally, the most recent being the acquisition by Tawal, a subsidiary of stc Group, of United Group’s telecommunications tower assets in Bulgaria, Croatia and Slovenia.

Mohammed K. A. Al Faisal, chairman of stc Group, said about the aquisition, “Telefónica and stc Group share many similarities, with a vision to use technology to connect people and a strategy to drive growth. This long-term, significant investment by stc Group is a continuation of our growth strategy as we invest in vital technology and digital infrastructure sectors across promising markets globally.”

Olayan Alwetaid, CEO of stc Group, further commented, “Our investment in Telefónica demonstrates our confidence in Telefónica’s leadership, its strategy and its ability to create value. As long-term, supportive shareholders, we are committed to strengthening our partnership.

“We do not intend to acquire control or a majority stake, but rather we see this as a compelling investment opportunity to use our strong balance sheet whilst maintaining our dividend policy.