Paris — Oil major Total is picking up about 150,000 retail energy customers a month in France and is on course to hit its 2022 target for the business ahead of schedule, company executives say. The French energy group is looking to broaden its revenue streams with expansion in a retail power and gas market in which demand is shifting to low-carbon energy from more polluting fossil fuels. Total has said it plans to invest $1.5bn to $2bn a year on low-carbon electricity. Rival Royal Dutch Shell, which is expanding its own retail power business, has said it plans to invest the same amount on renewables and low-carbon business. Total bought Belgium’s Lampiris in 2016 and Direct Energie in 2018 for $1.7bn, merging the businesses in its push to become a so-called integrated player operating gas-fired, wind, solar and hydropower generation while also selling power directly to retail clients. The group had set a target of 7-million clients across France and Belgium — about 15% of the mar...

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