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Shell to acquire British energy provider First Utility

Royal Dutch Shell plc will acquire the U.K.'s independent energy and broadband provider, First Utility, allowing the Netherlands-based oil company to sell electricity and gas directly to British households for the first time.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, but industry figures estimated the price at around £200 million to £300 million, The Guardian reported.

The deal is expected to complete in early 2018, subject to regulatory and other approvals, following which Shell will be supplying 825,000 households in the country, The Guardian reported. First Utility said it will operate as a stand-alone entity and wholly owned subsidiary of Shell within its New Energies division following the deal completion.

The move follows Shell's acquisitions of two electric car infrastructure firms as the company taps sectors outside oil and gas, according to the report.