Gas giant Gaz de France buys more wind

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Europe's largest supplier of natural gas, Gaz de France (GDF), has again added to its wind power portfolio with acquisition of Nass & Wind Technologie, a family-owned developer and operator founded in Brittany in 2001. The company operates 34 MW of installed capacity, mainly in the north of France, and has siting permits for a further 70 MW, with applications pending for at least another 100 MW and a development pipeline of around 2000 MW. It was the problem of how to finance all these projects that drove Nass & Wind Holding, the parent company, to look for a buyer last year. "We were a victim of our own success," says director Nathalie Le Meur. After talking to various contenders, they decided that GDF was the most "coherent choice." While Nass & Wind will see the projects through to completion with GDF, the company has other irons in the fire, including Nass & Wind Offshore, which is studying three sites in the Channel and off the Atlantic coast. As for GDF, the purchase brings its total installed wind capacity in France to 164 MW, all of which is now gathered under its new subsidiary, GDF Futures Energies, responsible for developing, building and managing the group's green generation assets. While this will include solar and other renewable energy sources, GDF foresees that growth will be driven primarily by wind power.

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