THE French utility company EDF Energy has acquired Bournemouth-based iSupplyEnergy, potentially putting 250 jobs at risk of redundancy.

Sweden's state-owned energy giant Vattenfall announced the customer accounts of iSupplyEnergy, which it took over just two-and-a-half years ago, have been acquired by EDF.

It is understood EDF, which already has just over five million residential gas and electricity customers in the UK, will add more than 190,000 households to its customer base because of the deal.

Vattenfall's decision to exit the UK market comes three months after it was fined £1.5m by Ofgem, the industry regulator, for overcharging customers.

Based at Richmond House, Richmond Hill, iSupplyEnergy employs around 250 members of staff.

Co-chief executive officer of iSupplyEnergy, Monica Collings, said: "We’ve remained very close to Vattenfall throughout this process, working with them to achieve the best outcome possible for our customers and employees.

“While this is the end of the iSupply journey, we’re grateful for the time we’ve spent together.

"We have a brilliant team who are dedicated to looking after customers and enjoy working together.

"Our task now is to work closely with EDF to deliver a seamless transfer of customer accounts and to support each other through a challenging period in which many of us will be feeling very anxious about our future. iSupplyEnergy and Vattenfall have committed to providing a very high level of support to all employees during the transition period."

Meanwhile, Cindy Kroon, vice-president customers and solutions Vattenfall Netherlands and UK, said: "EDF shares many of our values and has a proven ability to welcome large numbers of customers from other suppliers.

"We’re confident iSupplyEnergy customers will be very well looked after throughout the transition and will pay no more for energy supplied by EDF.

"Having stepped out of energy retail, we can focus greater attention on developing our other businesses in the UK."

The company insisted iSupplyEnergy’s customers will not need to do anything, as EDF will be in touch at the time of transfer to welcome them.

EDF is the UK’s largest producer of low-carbon electricity, meeting around one-fifth of the country’s demand and supplying millions of customers with electricity and gas. It was recently awarded second place out of 40 suppliers for customer service by Citizens Advice.

Most of iSupplyEnergy's customer accounts will transfer between April and June.

In a communication jointly sent to customers, both companies assured customers that their supply won’t be interrupted and the price they pay for energy will not increase.

Vattenfall says it took the decision to exit the UK domestic energy supply market in order to focus on developing its core UK renewable power generation, heating, B2B sales and distribution businesses. It has invested around £3.5bn in UK renewable generation and operates eleven onshore and offshore UK wind farms.