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American Water Works Company, Inc., the largest publicly traded US corporation devoted exclusively to the business of water, announced that it has completed the acquisition of the water and wastewater assets of Citizens Communications Company (formerly known as Citizens Utilities Company) for $859 million in cash and $120 million of assumed liabilities.
As a result of the acquisition, American Water Works will serve more than one million additional people in Pennsylvania, Arizona, California, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio.
American Water Works President and Chief Executive Officer J. James Barr described the transaction as "a perfect fit for American Water Works Company-- one that will deliver value for our customers, our shareholders, our associates and the communities we serve." Barr noted that the Company already has operations in each of the six states.
American Water Works is the parent company of Pennsylvania-American Water Company, the largest water utility in the state serving more than 2 million residents in 35 counties. As a result of the Citizens acquisition, Pennsylvania-American will serve an additional 130,000 people. The company's service territory has been expanded to include all or portions of 38 municipalities in Berks, Montgomery, Chester, Northampton, Monroe and Adams counties, bringing the total number of municipalities served across the state to 355.
"Today, we celebrate the beginning of a new partnership between the associates at Pennsylvania-American and our newest customers in the Glen Alsace, Penn Water, Home Water, Blue Mountain and Lake Heritage Districts," said Robert M. Ross, PAWC president and CEO. "The transition will be transparent to the customers, and we are committed to providing them with the same high level of service and quality water they're accustomed to receiving."
Citizens Utilities officials echoed this remark. "The only difference customers will notice is a new name on our company vehicles and on their water bill. Water rates and service standards will remain the same," said Brian Hassinger, manager, in the Wyomissing Office. "Customers will still see the same faces reading meters and performing service calls as they have in the past."
New customers to Pennsylvania-American will benefit from American Water Works' state-of-the-art Customer Service Center that is staffed with customer service representatives 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Customers can also take advantage of Pennsylvania-American's convenient payment options, including the company's Automatic Payment Program, whereby customers can save time and money by paying for their water bill directly from their checking or savings account. Pennsylvania-American is also in the process of making arrangements with local establishments to accept payments for Pennsylvania-American. Further information on locations will be provided in a future bill insert.
"Completing the purchase of Citizens Utilities is cause for celebration. I speak for all our associates when I say that we look forward to serving our new customers. We take pride in being a good corporate neighbor and emphasize the importance of maintaining a presence in the communities we serve," said Ross. "Our team of professionals is ready and committed to meeting the needs of all of our customers today and in the years to come."