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100 Years of Telefonica

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About 100 Years of Telefonica

On April 19, 1924, the Compañía Telefónica Nacional de España was founded in Madrid, a private company with the American company ITT as shareholders and the support of two Spanish banks: Urquijo and Hispanoamericano. From that moment on, a unique company developed in Spain that integrated telecommunications services throughout the country and laid the foundations for the importance of technology in the country's progress over the last century. Today known as Telefónica, it was a company that was born with the purpose of "connecting people's lives".

Telefónica has stood out for its capacity for continuous transformation throughout the first one hundred years of its existence. The first calls were made through teleoperators, but already in its first years it took on the challenge of automating the service in the main cities and extending the calls throughout Spain. Automatic calls were followed by the digitalization of the service and the milestone of having launched the first packet-switched data network in the world, back in the 70s, laying the foundations for banking and business development in our country.

In the 1990s, the company played a key role in the public projection of the country, participating in events as important as the Barcelona Olympic Games or the Seville Expo. It was in this same decade that the company began to offer commercial mobile telephony services, Internet access, pay television... and faced the challenge of competition due to the liberalization of the service. These years also saw the beginning of the company's international expansion, which today has a strong presence in Europe with the O2 brand, in Brazil with Vivo and in Latin America with Movistar, the brand that has brought together all commercial consumer services in Spain since 2010.

Today, Telefónica is one of the most prominent companies in our country, and its role in society transcends its mission to "make our world more human, connecting people's lives". In 2024, Spain will be one of the first countries in the world to say goodbye to the copper telecommunications network and migrate to an ultra-broadband network, mostly fiber optic, which will improve the quality of service while reducing the energy consumption of our networks. In addition to this innovative drive, the company's important social work in areas such as culture, sports, entrepreneurship, education and employability... the latter areas are developed by Fundación Telefónica.

On the centenary of the company, Correos joins this event by issuing a stamp depicting the construction of the iconic Telefónica building on Madrid's Gran Vía. A construction that was for some time the tallest building in Europe and that was used as the company's headquarters, telephone exchange, point of sale and advertising symbol... and that invited Spaniards to imagine a future of progress and development. A message that is maintained in the centenary that the company is celebrating, using the slogan "Imaginémonos" (Let's imagine). Because times may change and years may pass, but nothing will change the human need to connect with one another.