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Three UK, which is still licking its wounds after regulators blocked its attempt to buy O2 for £10.25bn, has finally revealed its ‘Plan B’.

Three has agreed to pay £250m to buy UK Broadband, which operates as Relish, which will pave the way for its entry to the fixed-line internet market.

There is a familial connection in the deal with Three UK part of Li Ka-shing’s CK Hutchison empire and UK Broadband part of his son Richard Li’s PCCW telecoms business.

The British broadband company has been around since 2004 and 10 years later it launched a fast broadband service in London under the Relish brand. That has not been a hit however with Three UK acquiring only 15,000 customers as part of the deal.

The bulk of the value in the deal is in the form of high-frequency spectrum which will be useful for the 5G launch

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2018. All rights reserved.

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