TalkTalk says its efforts to simplify the business meant it swung to a loss in its last financial year.

The telecoms and broadband supplier reported a statutory pre-tax loss of £73m in the 12 months to 31 March compared to a profit of £70m in the previous year.

TalkTalk, which has been drawn into a price war with rivals such as BT and Sky, the owner of Sky News, initiated a “reset” of the company in 2017 which included a renewed focus on fixed-line growth after a foray into mobile.

It said its turnaround efforts were starting to bear fruit with its customer base back in growth during 2017/18.

The company also confirmed on Thursday a story by Sky News that it was selling part of its direct business-to-business customer base to privately-owned rival Daisy Group for £175m.

Shares – down 17% in the year to date – rose 11% in early trading as investors digested the update, later settling about 3% higher.

Chief executive Tristia Harrison told shareholders: “When we reset TalkTalk a year ago, we said we would focus on delivering sustained customer growth whilst radically simplifying the business.”

More from Business

“One year into the strategy, we are making good progress on both.”

She added: “As expected, our decision to invest in growth has come with short-term implications for EBITDA (earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation), but positions us well for FY19, where the benefits of a bigger base, regulatory tailwinds and ongoing cost reduction mean we remain on track for EBITDA improvement of 15% (before Daisy) and headline revenue growth.”