UK-based TalkTalk struck an agreement to acquire rival SSE Phone & Broadband in a move that bolsters its customer portfolio, shortly after speculation about it facing a possible £3 billion buyout.

TalkTalk stated it had agreed a deal to acquire the company from Ovo Energy and all customers will be transferred to its portfolio later this year, when the deal is expected to close.

SSE Phone & Broadband has around 100,000 customers and uses Vodafone Group’s network as its connectivity partner, The Daily Telegraph reported.

TalkTalk’s customers tally 4.2 million, 2.4 million of which are fibre.

Ovo Energy acquired SSE Phone & Broadband in 2020 as part of a deal involving the wider SSE Energy Services group.

TalkTalk stated it would retain the current SSE Phone & Broadband brand until April 2023 “to support a smooth transition”.

Takeover talk
The proposed deal will no doubt raise eyebrows from larger UK service providers, particularly given the reported interest around a possible buyout of TalkTalk itself.

Last month, Sky News reported Virgin Media O2 had tabled a £3 billion bid for the company, with Vodafone Group also thought to be interested in a deal.