Spanish lender Caixabank has increased its stake to 84.5% from 45.5% in Portugal-based Banco BPI.

Caixabank paid €645m to boost its stake in the Portuguese bank, and said that it would now implement a cost synergies plan worth about €120m.

BPI CEO Fernando Ulrich is set to step down as part of the deal, though Caixabank proposed his election of Ulrich as chairman of BPI board.

CaixaBank chairman Jordi Gual said: “We thank the shareholders who accepted our offer, and welcome those who join us in what promises to be an exciting new era for BPI, which is a solid and well-managed bank. We will now be able to combine the best of both cultures in what will be a mutually enriching experience.”

In 2015 Caixabank submitted its proposal for BPI at €1.329 per share; however, the move was opposed by some shareholders, particularly Angolan investor Isabel dos Santos that forced Caixabank to withdraw that bid in 2016. Dos Santos owned approximately 20% stake in the Portuguese bank.

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