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Shell dials up deal to connect with Post Office broadband arm

Shell dials up deal to connect with Post Office broadband arm

Sun, 31 January 2021, 1:57 pm

The FTSE-100 oil giant Shell will this week clinch the purchase of the Post Office’s broadband operations, transforming its presence in the UK home communications market.

Sky News understands that Shell was on Sunday close to signing the deal after weeks of talks.

It is expected to cost the energy behemoth in the region of £80m, and will add roughly 500,000 customers to Shell Energy Retail’s existing base.

The deal, which could be announced early this week, will again reinforce how the world’s oil majors are reshaping their businesses to reduce their reliance on their traditional hydrocarbon operations.

Last week, Shell announced the acquisition of Ubitricity, the UK’s largest electric vehicle-charging network.

Shell has had a presence in the broadband market since acquiring First Utility in 2018, which also took it into the supply of energy to British households.

Shell Energy Retail – the new name of First Utility – has roughly 130,000 UK broadband customers, as well as 870,000 domestic energy accounts.

For the Post Office, the disposal enables Nick Read, its chief executive, to refocus on its core operations of mail and parcels, banking, travel services and bill payments.

A source close to the Post Office said it would ensure that no postmaster is out of pocket as a result of the sale, with its telecoms arm accounting to just 0.3% of their total pay during the last financial year.

SOURCE

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