Connecticut Natural Gas Seeks Combo
CTG Resources Inc., parent of Connecticut Natural Gas, announced
it has retained Paine Webber Inc. to advise it on strategic
alternatives to maximize shareholder value, including the potential
sale of the company and acquisitions of nonregulated enterprises to
expand the company's district heating and cooling activities.
"With the recent entry of a number of large players into the
Northeast energy markets, the size and scope of operations needed
to compete increases dramatically," CTG Chairman, President and CEO
Arthur C. Marquardt said. The company includes The Energy Network,
an unregulated subsidiary. CNG provides natural gas service to
approximately 142,000 residential, commercial, and industrial
customers, principally in greater Hartford and Greenwich, CT.
In the last year Massachusetts' Eastern Enterprises, parent of
Boston Gas, has offered to buy nearby distributors, Colonial Gas
Co. and Essex County Gas. And Northern Indiana Public Service
reached across the country and grabbed Bay State Gas, the
so-called "plum" among a flock of small Massachusetts distributors
Also in December Boston Edison parent BEC Energy announced it
would buy Cambridge, MA-based combination gas and electric utility,
Commonwealth Energy System, parent of Commonwealth Electric Co.,
Cambridge Electric Light Co., Canal Electric Co., and Commonwealth
Then in January Energy East Corp., parent of New York State
Electric & Gas, put in an offer to buy Connecticut Energy Corp.
(CNE) for $617 million, paving the way for the combined utility to
add 160,000 new gas customers and at the same time continuing to
shrink the number of pure gas utilities.
The New England area is marked by numerous small distributors,
who analysts expect to see combined over the next few years into
just three or four large combination utilities.
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