BRYN MAWR, Pa. - Aqua America, Inc. (NYSE:WTR) announced today that its North Carolina subsidiary has acquired the water utility system assets of Setzer Brothers, Inc. for $162,500. The system serves about 600 residents in four subdivisions in Catawba County.
The Setzer system has been classified as “troubled” by North Carolina state regulators. Troubled systems are those in need of significant capital improvements to ensure an adequate supply of safe drinking water to their customers. Aqua North Carolina will manage the system’s operations from its Denver office in neighboring Lincoln County.
“Aqua already serves customers near the Setzer system,” said Aqua America Chairman and CEO Nicholas DeBenedictis. “Filling out our footprint in areas adjacent to our existing systems enables us to take advantage of economies of scale. That means we can give all of our customers better service — and more efficiently.”
“Aqua’s purchase of the Setzer system is part of our ongoing initiative to acquire distressed water and wastewater systems and invest in improvements that will enhance water quality and service,” said Aqua North Carolina President Tom Roberts. “This joint effort by the North Carolina Utilities Commission, the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources, and Aqua will provide our new customers with reliable water service that meets environmental standards.”
The Setzer acquisition is the fourteenth by Aqua America this year and the second in North Carolina. Other acquisitions took place in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Illinois, Virginia and Texas.