Public Service Enterprise Group Incorporated shareholders have overwhelmingly approved the company's plan to merge with Exelon Corporation to form the largest utility company in the US.
The announcement of the vote tally came at Public Service Enterprise Group Incorporated’s annual meeting held in Newark, NJ. Ninety-seven percent of the votes cast – totaling 157 million shares (out of 161.6 million shares cast) – were in favor of the merger. Exelon’s shareholders will vote on the merger at its annual meeting this Friday in Philadelphia.
Utility customers, as well as shareholders, stand to benefit from the substantial cost savings achieved as a result of the merger, commented James Ferland, chairman and CEO of Public Service Enterprise Group Incorporated.
We will create savings by combining administrative functions and operations areas, sharing technology and applying best practices, added Mr Ferland. This will help keep utility service safe and reliable and as low-cost as possible, and contribute more generally to improved operations.
The combined company, Exelon Electric & Gas, will be the largest electric company in the US with more than seven million electric customers in Pennsylvania, Illinois and New Jersey, as well as more than two million gas customers in Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
According to initial reports of the merger deal at the end of last year, Exelon will pay $12 billion for PSEG’s assets to create a combined company with total assets of approximately $79 billion. The new entity will achieve approximately $27 billion in annual revenues and $3.2 billion in annual net income.
Based on the current regulatory schedule, PSEG believes the merger will be completed in the first or second quarter of 2006.