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UPDATE 2-Italy state holding company completes Eni stake sale

Tuesday, 9 Oct 2012 | 3:03 PM ET

* CDP sells 3.3 pct stake in Eni to help fund Snam stake buy

* CDP says sold 200 million shares for 2.1 bln euros

* CDP now owns 25.76 pct stake in Eni

(Recasts with CDP statement)

MILAN, Oct 9 (Reuters) - Italy's state investment holding company, Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP), completed the sale of a 3.3 percent stake in oil group Eni on Tuesday for 2.1 billion euros to help fund the acquisition of a controlling stake in gas network company Snam.

The government has called on Eni to exit Snam in an effort to improve competition in Italy's natural gas market and help bring down prices for Italian consumers.

The government considers the gas transport network of Snam and the power grid of Terna as strategic assets and is keen for CDP to keep control of them.

The sale of the 3.3 percent stake cuts CDP's stake in Eni to 25.76 percent, the investment holding company said in a statement on Tuesday.

Since Aug. 7, CDP has raised more than 2.1 billion euros from the sale of a 3.3 percent stake in Eni to help fund the acquisition of just under 30 percent of Snam.

Earlier on Tuesday, Credit Suisse placed 10.7 million Eni shares for 17.33 euros each on behalf of CDP, sources told Reuters. The placement lasted about three minutes, one of the sources said.

CDP has placed a total of 120 million Eni shares at a weighted average price of 17.55 euros, above the market average price in the two-month period since Aug. 7.

Eni shares closed up 0.64 percent at 17.26 euros on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Stephen Jewkes and Giancarlo Navach in Milan, with Francesco Canepa and David Brett in London; Editing by David Holmes and John Wallace)

((stephen.jewkes@thomsonreuters.com)(+39.0266129695)(Reuters

Messaging: stephen.jewkes.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

Keywords: ENI CDP/