Dover, Delaware — Chesapeake Utilities Corporation (NYSE: CPK) (“Chesapeake”) announced today that it has acquired the operating assets of Austin Cox Home Services, Inc. (“Austin Cox”). Based in Salisbury, Maryland, Austin Cox provides HVAC, plumbing and electrical services to residential and commercial customers throughout the lower Delmarva Peninsula. The Company will retain its name and office location in Salisbury, Maryland and Austin “Skip” Cox, Jr. will be President of Chesapeake’s newest subsidiary.
Chesapeake currently provides natural gas distribution and propane distribution service to approximately 103,800 customers on the Delmarva Peninsula. The acquisition of the Austin Cox assets will enable Chesapeake to provide a broader range of services to customers on the Peninsula. In addition to HVAC, plumbing and electrical services, Austin Cox can perform in-home conversions for those customers who choose to convert from alternative fuels to natural gas.
On May 31, 2013, Chesapeake’s subsidiary, Sandpiper Energy, acquired the operating assets of Eastern Shore Gas Company (“ESG”), enabling the Company to significantly expand its footprint in Worcester County. Over the next few months, Sandpiper Energy will evaluate the potential conversion of the ESG facilities from propane to natural gas and will proceed with conversions where economically feasible.
Natural gas is among the most economical and environmentally friendly energy alternatives for both residences and businesses. The Company is experiencing tremendous interest by consumers throughout its service territories for conversion to gas and will be partnering with area contractors to assist in the customer conversion process and meet the expected demand for natural gas service.
“Converting customers to natural gas will require teamwork and assistance from contractors in our service areas. Austin Cox has a long standing history and strong reputation in the greater Salisbury area and we are excited to work with them to assist in this key strategic initiative,” said Michael P. McMasters, President and Chief Executive Officer of Chesapeake Utilities Corporation.
The Cox family has been serving the Delmarva community for over 60 years. Founded by Austin Cox, Sr. in 1947 to serve commercial customers, Austin Cox, Jr. took over the business from his father in 1988 and in 2009, formed Austin Cox Home Services, Inc. to focus solely on residential and commercial customers providing HVAC, plumbing and electrical services.
Chesapeake Utilities Corporation is a diversified utility company engaged in natural gas distribution, transmission and marketing; electric distribution; propane gas distribution and wholesale marketing; advanced information services and other related services. Today, Chesapeake, through several divisions and subsidiaries, provides natural gas and propane distribution service to approximately 103,800 customers on the Delmarva Peninsula. Chesapeake owns and operates a 428-mile interstate pipeline that transports natural gas from various points in Pennsylvania to customers in Delaware, Maryland and Pennsylvania through ESNG, their pipeline transmission subsidiary. Information about Chesapeake’s businesses is available on the World Wide Web at www.chpk.com.
# # #
For more information, contact:
Beth W. Cooper
Senior Vice President & Chief Financial Officer
Chesapeake Utilities Corporation