Newly privatised Italian electricity supplier, Terna (formerly Enel), is planning its launch on the Italian stock market on 23 June. The company owns 94 per cent of the high-tension electricity distribution grid in the country.

To encourage investors Ternas managing director, Fulvio Conti, is offering "strong returns, low risks, potential for significant growth", and one free share for every 20 shares bought by 18 June and not sold for 18 months.

Last summer Enel came in for strong criticism when unusually high demand for electricity, combined with a short-fall in supply from abroad, caused day-time black-outs, sometimes lasting for several hours. This led to rationing on a rota basis in some major cities on high demand days, a scheme that has been planned again this year if there is a repeat of last years very hot summer.

The Terna shares are expected to float at around 1.7 euros each. Offers from private investors, for a minimum of 2,000 shares, will be accepted from 14 -18 June.

Italian private investors are still recovering from losses that they incurred with Argentinian bonds and in the collapse of the dairy giant Parmalat.

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