Atmos Energy Corp. said it has reached a definitive agreement topay $375 million for the gas operations of two Citizens UtilitiesCo. distribution subsidiaries — Louisiana Gas Service Co. and LGSNatural Gas Co. Atmos said the acquisitions will make it thelargest natural gas distributor in Louisiana with approximately359,000 customers.

Louisiana Gas Service serves approximately 279,000 customers andis headquartered in Harvey, LA. LGS Natural Gas Company is anintrastate pipeline company that provides gas transportationservice to industrial customers.

This acquisition of assets will be accounted for as a purchaseand is anticipated to be accretive to earnings in the first fullyear of operations after closing, excluding one-time chargesrelated to the transaction, Dallas-based Atmos said. Thetransaction is expected to be completed within 12 months and issubject to approval by the Louisiana Public Service Commission.

“This transaction is consistent with Atmos’ long-term corporatestrategy of increasing the value of the company through strategicacquisitions,” said Robert W. Best, CEO of Atmos Energy Corp. “Withthe pending acquisition of Associated Natural Gas and the additionof Louisiana Gas Service, Atmos’ customer base will increase toapproximately 1.4 million customers, making Atmos the 5th largestpure gas utility in the United States.”

Atmos Energy Corp. distributes natural gas and propane to morethan one million customers in 13 states through its operatingdivisions – Energas, Greeley Gas, Trans Louisiana Gas, UnitedCities Gas, Western Kentucky Gas and United Cities Propane Gas,Inc.

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