CVPS Signs Sale Agreement With Gaz Metro

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Central Vermont Public Service has signed an agreement to be sold to Montreal-based Gaz Metro.

The CVPS board says they’ve terminated a previous agreement reached with the Newfoundland-based company Fortis. Fortis said in a statement that it waived its right to try to negotiate a better deal with CVPS.

In exchange, Fortis said, it required CVPS to pay a $17.5 million termination fee that was part of the original agreement, in addition to $2 million in expenses.

Fortis said it expected to receive those payments today.

In a statement, CVPS and Gaz Metro say the deal is a tremendous opportunity for Vermont’s economy and the combined resources will allow the company to provide competitively priced power. And they say the deal will mean $144 million in customer savings over ten years. And Vermont would get an ownership interest in the state’s transmission grid. But some executive positions will be lost due to consolidation.

The agreed to sale includes a price of $35.25 per share, a 45 percent increase over the previous share price, and an increase in the share price offered by Fortis.

Gov. Peter Shumlin says the consolidation of Vermont’s two largest utilities promises significant savings for Vermonters. He says it makes sense for the state’s energy and jobs future.

Gaz Metro purchased Green Mountain Power in 2007. The deal must be approved by Vermont’s Public Service Board. If it’s approved, 70 percent of Vermont’s electricity customers will be served by Gaz Metro.

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