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Italy's Edison buys EDF assets to boost green credentials

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MILAN (Reuters) – Italy’s Edison has agreed to buy green energy assets from its French parent company EDF to make it Italy’s No. 2 wind player and pave the way for “major” growth in solar power.

In a complex deal, Edison will pay 172.9 million euros (£153.5 million) to buy 265 megawatts of Italian wind assets from EDF’s renewable arm as well as 77 MW of solar power capacity.

There has been growing interest in Italy’s fragmented solar sector after infrastructure fund F2i agreed last July to buy Terra Firma’s Italian solar portfolio for 1.3 billion euros.

Edison, which to date has focused its renewables business on wind and hydroelectric power, already has about 710 MW of wind capacity through a venture with F2i.

The company expects 40% of its total production to come from renewable sources by 2030.

“With this project Edison intends to continue on its course of consolidation in the renewable energy sector through organic and external growth,” the company said.

The deal, which is expected to be wrapped up by the end of June, will allow Edison to book about 70 million euros of additional core earnings per year with an increase in net financial debt of 431 million euros, it said.

Societe Generale was sole adviser in the deal.

(Reporting by Stephen Jewkes; editing by David Evans)

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