The Houston utility Direct Energy Marketing Ltd. has agreed to upgrade its First Data Corp. billing and customer management software.

The Denver processor said Friday that the energy company would implement its Peace 8 Customer Information System. Direct Energy is a subsidiary of the U.K. utility company Centrica PLC.

First Data acquired the technology in August by buying the New Zealand billing technology company Peace Software Inc., a utilities specialist. First Data made the acquired outfit the main component of a new unit, First Data Utilities. Direct Energy has been using the Peace software since 2000; Peace 8 is the newest version.