(Bloomberg) -- CriteriaCaixa SA, Spain’s biggest financial holding company, is seeking to increase its stake in Telefonica SA to 10%, matching the Spanish government’s position.

Criteria is seeking to raise its stake from its current 5% as part of newly appointed Chief Executive Officer Angel Simon’s strategy to expand industrial holdings, website El Confidencial reported. The news was confirmed by a Criteria official. 

Criteria has been buying Telefonica shares over the past year as CaixaBank SA reduced its own stake in the carrier, to 2.51% as of March. Criteria is owned by La Caixa Foundation, which is the top holder in CaixaBank. Banker Isidro Faine is chairman of both the foundation and Criteria and has served as a board-member of Telefonica for more than 30 years.

Telefonica’s ownership structure is going through a deep change since Saudi Telecom Co. announced a plan in September to acquire 9.9% of the Spanish company’s capital for €2.1 billion ($2.3 billion). Spain’s government views the carrier as a strategic firm and countered the move by acquiring a 10% stake, an operation that was completed Monday.

STC, which is controlled by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, owns 4.9% of Telefonica’s shares and holds a further 5% through derivatives. The firm will need the Spanish government’s approval to convert that 5% into shares.

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