Dominion Resources combines with Questar Corporation

dominion virginia powerDominion Resources and Questar Corporation announced today that they have completed their proposed merger, forming one of the nation’s largest combined electric and natural gas energy companies.

Thomas F. Farrell II, chairman, president and chief executive officer, said:

“We are pleased to complete our strategic combination with Questar, and to continue serving our Questar customers in the West with the same commitment and dedication to safety and excellence to which they – and our customers along the Eastern Seaboard and Midwest – are accustomed. Questar’s high-performing regulated businesses also improve our geographic diversity and enhance our balance between electric and gas operations.”

Questar’s “hub of the Rockies” system is a principal gateway for gas supply to Western states. Dominion expects that demand on Questar’s pipeline system will rise as Western states rely increasingly on low-carbon, natural gas-fired generation to comply with potentially stringent federal clean air requirements and to support state-mandated renewable standards. Questar’s gas distribution operations benefit from being located in one of the country’s fastest growing regions.

“Questar’s businesses are ideally located to take advantage of the growth opportunities due to the changing energy landscape, benefiting the economies of the states in which they operate,” Farrell said.

The combined company includes:

  • 2.5 million electric utility customer accounts in Virginia and North Carolina;
  • 2.3 million natural gas utility customer accounts in Idaho, Ohio, Utah, West Virginia and Wyoming;
  • 1.3 million retail energy and related services customer accounts in 13 states;
  • 14,400 miles of natural gas gathering, storage and transmission pipeline and nearly 51,000 miles of gas distribution pipeline;
  • 6,500 miles of electric transmission lines and 57,300 miles of electric distribution lines;
  • 25,700 megawatts of electric production in 11 states; and
  • More than a trillion cubic feet of natural gas storage.

Ronald W. Jibson, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Questar, said:

“From our initial meetings with Dominion leaders it was evident from our similar strategies, cultures, values, and employee and safety focus that Dominion was an excellent company to combine with to move us into the future. After working through a very smooth merger, I’m more confident than ever that this opportunity to combine with one of the nation’s best energy companies will benefit Questar customers, employees, shareholders and the communities we serve.”

 

Benefit to customers, communities

Questar – now Dominion Questar – will operate as a first-tier, wholly owned subsidiary of Dominion. Questar’s principal operating companies – Questar Gas, Questar Pipeline and Wexpro – have retained their names as of closing.

Dominion Questar will maintain its significant local presence with a local management structure drawn from existing Questar employees. Questar Gas’ headquarters also will remain in Salt Lake City, along with a new Western Regional operating headquarters there.

Effective today, Questar CEO Jibson has retired and has been elected to Dominion’s board of directors. Craig C. Wagstaff has been named president of Dominion Questar. He will lead Dominion’s Western natural gas operations and be responsible for all current Questar operating companies.

Other benefits of the Dominion-Questar combination include:

  • A $75 million contribution to Questar employee retirement plans, at Dominion shareholder expense;
  • Withdrawal of a $22 million rate increase request in Utah, thereby stabilizing base rates until 2020;
  • An agreement in Wyoming to freeze base rates at current levels until at least Jan. 1, 2020;
  • A commitment to maintain Questar Gas’ excellent customer service levels, with frequent reporting to state public service commissions;
  • A $1 million per year increase in charitable giving in Dominion Questar’s service area for at least the next five years, at Dominion shareholder expense;
  • Establishment of a new Western region operating headquarters in Salt Lake City; and
  • Maintaining environmental monitoring and maintenance programs at Questar Gas at or above current levels.