French utility Gaz de France, which is currently embroiled in a merger saga with its domestic counterpart Suez, has acquired a 20% stake in Energie Investimenti from Italian energy player Camfin for E40 million.

Gaz de France (GDF) said that, following the transaction, it now owns 60% of Energie Investimenti, while Camfin holds the remaining 40%.

Energie Investimenti is a joint venture operating in the natural gas sector in Italy. It has a portfolio that includes 850,000 residential and small business customers and also sells gas to industrial customers under the GDF energy label. Energie Investimenti is one of the top-ranking operators in Italy, recording sales of three billion cubic meters of natural gas per year.

GDF’s decision to exercise its right to acquire the additional stake in Energie Investimenti follows the European Commission’s approval of the move earlier in September 2007.