Carphone Warehouse completes TalkTalk split


Carphone Warehouse completes TalkTalk split

Alex Scroxton
Carphone Warehouse completed the long-planned demerger of its broadband business TalkTalk on Monday morning to concentrate on consumer electronics and IT sales through its JV with US retailer Best Buy.

TalkTalk, which claims 4.2 million domestic subscribers in the UK and also runs channel-centric b-2-b comms provider Opal, will be led by former J Sainsbury exec Dido Harding. It listed this morning under the TALK ticker symbol. Carphone boss and founder Charles Dunstone remains in overall charge with a 33% stake in both companies.

Trading in new Carphone Warehouse Group shares on the LSE also began this morning under the ticker CPW. At the time of writing the share prices of Carphone Warehouse and TalkTalk were up 7% and 1.8% respectively.

The demerger of Carphone Warehouse and TalkTalk is the second major split performed by a communications provider in the space of a week; last Friday Cable & Wireless, which owns TalkTalk's competitor Thus, demerged into two separate companies.

Carphone Warehouse's new pal Best Buy has also confirmed locations and launch dates for the first of its UK big box stores.

The first store will open in Thurrock in May, to be followed by units in Southampton, the West Midlands, Merseyside and Croydon later this year, it was reported today.

The JV was announced in 2008 but the impact of the economic downturn set back the opening of the new stores by almost 12 months.

The happy couple hope the large format stores will stand them in good stead against the likes of DSGi, which recently committed to opening 25 megastores in the UK by Christmas, and claims to have identified more potential locations for its out-of-town push.

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