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2004 Business News


December, 2004

SPX Corporation sells municipal water and wastewater valve business to St. Cloud, Minnesota-based Granite Equity Partners for $29.75 million

The water valve and related business, based in Sartell, Minnesota, has annual estimated revenues of $60 million and was previously part of the company's Flow Technology segment. Press Release_ 12/31/04

UK competition ruling opens up possibility of water mergers
A UK Competition Commission ruling has left the door ajar for monopoly water companies to merge with each other provided takeovers do not "prejudice the ability" industry regulatos, to impose proper controls.   Financial Times_12/27/04

German city of Brunswick approves sale of a 74.9 percent stake in its municipal utility Braunschweiger Versorgungs AG to French utility group Veolia Environnement for $498.8 million

Veolia had been their prefered bidder, beating the other final candidates, financial investors Macquarie Corporate Finance group and German bank HSH Nordbank. The city had sold the same stake in BVAG, which supplies around 200,000 households and industrial clients with electricity, gas, heat and water, to TXU Europe for around 425 million euros in May 2002. But in November, TXU Europe filed for administration after a collapse in UK energy prices pushed the firm into insolvency which precipitated the withdrawal of support from its U.S. parent. The BVAG takeover will allow Veolia, one of the world's biggest water companies, to boost its presence in the lucrative German energy retail market, where large companies have carved up most of the market but are now being prevented from expanding their muscle by the cartel authorities. Reuters_ 12/16/04

November, 2004

General Electric Co. to buy Ionics Inc. for $1.1 billion to build water business

GE, the world's largest company by market value, agreed to acquire Ionics to tap rising demand for water purification and treatment in developing countries. The purchase will add desalination and filtration to General Electric's industrial water-treatment division, the world's second- largest. Watertown, Massachusetts-based Ionics is the fourth-largest U.S. water-treatment company by sales. Bloomberg.com_ 11/24/04

Harmony, Pennsylvania ends months of debate and votes against selling its water system

The Pennsylvania-American Water Co. has had a standing offer on the table for more than a year to buy the Harmony system and its 640 customers for $1.5 million. Pittsburgh Post-Gazette_ 11/7/04

International consortium wins EUR 1 million contract to survey groundwater in Hungary

The Hungarian Ministry of Environment and Water contract calls for the firm to conduct an ecological survey of all surface waters in Hungary and the formulation of a nation-wide monitoring program in order to assist Hungary's accession to the EU by contributing to the implementation of the Water Framework Directive. The contract was awarded to the international consortium of ARCADIS, a consulting and engineering firm, Mott Macdonald (U.K.) and the Danish Hydrological Institute. Press Release/Business Wire_ 11/4/04

Veolia Environnement SA revenues decline amid asset selloff

The world's largest water company decided last year to dispose of assets and restructure its businesses to trim a bulging debt amassed by former Vivendi Universal SA chairman Jean-Marie Messier. Veolia once was at the heart of Vivendi. The water division, which accounts for 35 percent of Veolia's business, suffered from milder weather conditions in France after last year's heat wave, but benefited from a series of new contracts abroad, particularly in Asia. Veolia said water division revenue for the quarter came to 7.26 billion euros ($9.31 billion), up 1.6 percent from the same period of 2003. Proceeds from the sale of water operations in the United States and a lucrative stake in a Spanish construction company allowed Veolia to cut its net debt to 10.1 billion euros ($12.95 billion) as of Sept. 30 from 12.7 billion euros at the end of June. AP/San Francisco Chronicle_ 11/4/04

France's Suez reports 3.8 percent drop in nine-month sales

The world's fourth biggest diversified utility in 2003 embarked on a programme to cut costs and sell assets to reduce debt and focus on its core energy, waste and water management businesses. It reiterated expectations of underlying sales growth of 4-7 percent over 2004-2006. Suez, which vies with domestic rival Veolia Environnement and Germany's RWE, generates 79 percent of its revenue in Europe and 10 percent in North America. Reuters_ 11/3/04

October, 2004

Las Vegas Valley Water District picks ViryaNet software to manage field services

The LVVWD provides water services to more than one million people in Southern Nevada. The district will use ViryaNet Service Hub for Utilities to automate several divisions, including meter services, customer service, distribution, fleet services, and facilities maintenance. ViryaNet software will schedule and dispatch LVVWD's 200 field service technicians, using criteria such as proximity to job, skills and capabilities, work order type, and needed parts.  Press Release/Business Wire_ 10/28/04

Bahrain's First Islamic Investment Bank to take over British water utility South Staffordshire for $262 million

South Staffs supplies water to 1.25 million people in the Black Country area of central England. First Islamic, which made the equity offer through a specially-created company, AquaInvest, hopes to sell the 151-year-old company on to rich Middle Eastern clients who are looking for high-yield, low-risk returns. First Islamic's acquisition is the latest in a line of foreign takeovers of UK water companies. Australia's Macquarie Bank bought South East Water earlier this year and others such as Wessex, Cambridge, and Thames are owned by companies based in Malaysia, Hong Kong, and Germany.  Reuters_ 10/27/04

GFI Energy Ventures buys SPL WorldGroup, plans to merge SPL, Synergen, and Mobility under the SPL brand

The combined company will offer utility-specific solutions that include customer care & billing, asset management, mobile workforce management, outage management, and distribution management.  Press Release_ 10/19/04

French utility company Suez to build water treatment plant in Qingdao, in China's eastern Shandong province

Suez Chairman Gerard Mestrallet said the deal includes an agreement to distribute water in the region for 25 years. Suez, which already distributes water in Qingdao to 2 million people, said the new deal will allow it progressively to increase its client base there to 12 million people.  Reuters_ 10/9/04

Veolia wins 10-year, $800 million extension to its Florida waste management contract

The French utility, which runs waste management, water management, transportation and energy services businesses, said its Onyx Montenay Power Corp. in Miami-Dade County extended its operating contract for a waste disposal plant through 2023. The contract began in 1985 and Veolia extended it once before. The United States accounts for about 8 percent of Veolia's total sales, which were 28.6 billion euros ($35.2 billion) worldwide in 2003, and U.S. sales are growing at a rate of about 8 to 10 percent annually. Reuters_ 10/5/04

French-based Veolia Water invests nearly US $1.21 billion in China water systems

Since its first co-operation with China's first water works in Tianjin in 1997, the French company has successfully won bids for 13 water projects throughout the country. Last December, the company bought a 45 percent stake of the Shenzhen Water Group for US$400 million, which has been the largest water project purchase ever in China. Earlier this year, Veolia Water bought the operation rights of two water works in Zunyi, a city of Guizhou Province, for 152 million yuan (US$18.3 million). China Daily_ 10/4/04

September, 2004

ITT Industries launches Aquious brand - membrane filtration for advanced water treatment solutions

The new brand will envelope ITT Industries' existing membrane filtration products to provide its customers with a broad and innovative range of filtration process systems and products to serve the desalination, surface water treatment, water reuse and industrial process separation markets. Aquious is currently operating with sales/applications offices and manufacturing centers in North America, Europe and Asia. Press Release_ 9/30/04

French utilities group Veolia Environnement's Water division to focus on German and eastern Europe business

The unit's managing director Antoine Frerot said Veolia would benefit from the efforts made by eastern European countries hoping to enter the European Union in 2007, such as Romania or Bulgaria, which are beginning to privatise their markets and apply EU environmental regulations. AFP/Business Day_ 9/28/04

French telecoms group Bouygues lines up buyers for its Saur water business

Private equity firms Eurazeo, PAI and CVC Capital Partners have been short-listed to acquire the water-treatment unit, people close to the deal said. According to Merrill Lynch, Saur is France's third largest water-treatment and waste management operation with annual revenues of about 1.7 billion euros. Reuters_ 9/24/04

Chief of Canada's Groupe Laperriere & Verreault Inc. expects demand for water treatment equipment to help drive revenue growth

Chief Executive Laurent Verreault said he wants water-treatment revenue to reach about C$200 million annually, up from as much as C$85 million this year. Bloomberg_ 9/23/04

Diversified manufacturer Danaher Corp. to buy Canada's Trojan Technologies Inc., a water treatment company, for $185 million

Trojan, based in London, Ontario, has annual revenue of about $100 million and is a leader in the design, manufacture and sale of water-treatment solutions using ultraviolet technologies. Danaher, which makes process and environmental controls and tools, said the acquisition will add slightly to its 2004 earnings and is expected to be completed through a tender offer. The acquisition also will broaden Danaher's line of water disinfection products and boost overseas growth. Reuters_ 9/20/04

Veolia Environnement SA, the world's largest water utility, returns to profit after 2-year shakeup

Veolia, at one time at the heart of the Vivendi Universal conglomerate, last year decided to offload assets and restructure its businesses to help reduce a bulging debt amassed by former chairman Jean-Marie Messier. As part of a buying spree, Messier had acquired various water assets, including an interest in Spanish construction company Fomento de Construcciones y Contratas in 1998 and water treatment company United States Filter Corp. for 7.2 billion euros ($8.88 billion) in 1999. USFilter was sold this year to Siemens AG for $993 million. Dow Jones/AP/San Francisco Chronicle_ 9/17/04

Monterey County, California, officials discuss public takeover of California American Water's local operation

County Supervisor Dave Potter said the time may be right to have a public entity buy the Peninsula water system back from Cal-Am and its German owner, RWE Thames Water, the third-largest water company in the world. A local developer also is interested in buying the water company by Cal-Am's spokesperson says it's not for sale. Cal-Am has operated on the Peninsula for decades, since well before it was acquired by the German company, but as it acquired other systems along the coast in the past two years, localized opposition to the company has grown. Monterey Herald_ 9/9/04

American Water, the largest private supplier of water services in North America, completes acquisitions in Pennsylvania, Illinois and Missouri
Pennsylvania American Water purchased the water assets of the 1.354-customer Sligo Borough Authority for $430,000. Pennsylvania American Water, the largest regulated water utility in the state, now serves more than two million people in 368 Pennsylvania communities. Illinois American Water acquired the Saunemin water system for $310,000. Illinois American provides water and/or wastewater services to more than one million people in 125 Illinois communities. It is the largest water utility in the state. Missouri American Water acquired the assets of the Warren County Water and Sewer Company for $305,000 from a private company. American Water, which serves 18 million in more than 1,800 communities in North America, is part of RWE Thames Water. American Water operates in 29 U.S. states, three Canadian provinces and Puerto Rico.  Press Release_ 9/2/04

Billing apartment residents for water separately from rent increases conservation by 15%: Report

Municipalities and policy makers seeking incentives to improve water conservation should embrace direct water billing by the apartment industry, according to a new study produced in cooperation with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), 10 municipal water utilities and two national apartment associations. Press Release/PRNewswire_ 9/2/04

August, 2004

Sale of US Filter unit gets US antitrust approval
U.S. antitrust authorities said on Thursday they had approved the $610 million sale of water supplier Culligan International by French utitlities group Veolia Environnement. The Northbrook, Illinois-based company is one of the leading U.S. suppliers of water filters and bottled water, with sales of $682 million in 2003.  Reuters 8/19/04

Pentair, Inc. completes $850 million purchase of WICOR Industries

Deal creates $2 billion water technology business with about 8,000 employes worldwide. WICOR makes water system, filtration and pool equipment under the Sta-Rite, SHURflor and Hypro brands. Since 1995, Pentair has acquired 11 companies in the
water arena, and each has increased sales and contributed to Pentair's
earnings within the first 12 months of ownership. Press Release_ 8/2/04

RWE Thames Water to sell its international water assets for up to 1 billion pounds ($1.8 billion) reports the Financial Express

Japanese conglomerate Mitsui is thought to be in the lead to buy a range of Thames Water's assets earmarked for sale as it concentrates on its core U.S. and European operations, the newspaper said, without citing sources. The paper added that Thames Water has been in talks with potential buyers for several months. Thames Water's international division comprises water and sewage businesses in countries including Turkey, Indonesia and Australia, the paper said. Reuters_ 8/1/04

Feature: American Water's strategy for the future

The unit of Thames Water, which itself is a division of German utility holding company RWE AG, plans to go after contracts to run water and wastewater systems for cities and military bases, and compete for contracts to run desalination plants, said its president and CEO, Jeremy Pelczer. American Water was formed when RWE bought American Water Works Co. for $8.6 billion in January 2003. When it was acquired, American Water Works Co. was already the largest water utility in the United States. The new entity added operations in Canada, Puerto Rico and Chile and became part of Thames Water, the third largest water utility in the world. Philadelphia Business Journal/MSNBC_ 8/1/04

Feature: Aqua America Inc. sees small acquisitions as the best way to grow

These acquisitions may only bring the company a few thousand or, in some cases, a few hundred, additional customers, but over time, they add up. There are only 11 publicly traded water companies left that are based in the United States. Aqua America, then Philadelphia Suburban Corp., made its first big move in 1999, when it bought Consumers Water Co. of Portland, Maine, for approximately $463 million in stock and assumed debt. Philadelphia Business Journal/MSNBC_ 8/1/04

July, 2004
World Bank blacklists Canada's Acres International for corruption on Lesotho dam project

Acres, bought in June by design firm Hatch of Mississauga, Ontario, will be barred from receiving any new bank-financed contracts for the next three years. The bank's move does not affect existing contracts with Acres, which includes projects in the West Bank and Gaza, Ghana, Ethiopia and Tanzania worth around $2.3 million. The project, the result of an agreement signed in 1986 with South Africa, will redirect Lesotho's abundant water resources to South Africa's industrial heartland in Gauteng province through an elaborate network of dams.  Reuters_ 7/23/04

Houston-based American PureTex Water Corp. plans to sell underground water in metropolitan Texas areas

The company recently announced acquisition rights to 24 trillion gallons of subterranean water in Austin, Colorado and Wharton counties. George Abbey, former director of the Johnson Space Center, heads the group of private investors who envisio development of a pipeline system that will take six years to build and cost an expected $350 million.  Houston Business Journal_ 7/16/04

IDAAN, Panama's largest utility selects Haestad Methods' water resources modeling software
Panama's Institute for National Water Supply and Sewerage Systems will use the software to improve and expand 2,700 miles (4,250 km) of water mains and 700 miles (1,000 km) of sanitary sewers. The systems serve over 2.9 million people in eastern Panama.  Press Release_ 7/19/04

American Water Services abandoning financially-troubled eastern Kentucky plant
New Jersey-based American Water Services, a subsidiary of RWE in Germany, says the Martin County's water district owes more than $537,000. RWE is also the parent company of Kentucky-American Water, which is trying to fend off a condemnation effort by the city of Lexington. The 31-year-old rust-streaked water plant in Martin County serves 3,400 customers and has a history of operational and staffing problems. After a state crackdown, the water district board entered a five-year contract in 2002 with American Water to operate the system. The district simply hasn't generated enough money to make the $70,833 monthly payments plus reimbursements for repairs.  WKYT27_ 7/12/04

Federal Trade Commission clears Pentair Inc. to buy water systems maker WICOR for $850 million
WICOR manufactures water systems, filtration and pool equipment products sold under the brands Sta-Rite, Hypro and SHURflo. It had revenue of $750 million in 2003 and 3,500 employees at 24 locations worldwide. Pentair said the WICOR acquisition will make its water systems business into a $2 billion unit. Minneapolis-St. Paul Business Journal_ 7/6/04

French Bouygues considering sale of EUR 2.5 billion water utility Saur, but nothing imminent: Spokeswoman
Saur provides water to 35 million customers around the world, including six million in France. Last year Bouygues exited another of its water businesses, taking a EUR18 million capital loss to sell U.K. water utility South East Water for GBP294 million to Australia's Macquarie Bank Ltd. (MBL.AU). Dow Jones/Yahoo!_ 7/5/04

Phillippines' Ayala Corp.'s MWC Holdings to merge with Manila Water Co.
MWC Holdings, whose principal assets are shares of Manila Water, is 60-percent-owned by Ayala Corp. and 40-percent owned by Manila Water. Manila Water supplies drinking water to half of metropolitan Manila. INQ7_ 7/5/04

Aqua America, Inc.'s Florida subsidiary, Aqua Utilities Florida, Inc., completes $13.82 million acquisition of 63 water and wastewater systems from Florida Water Services Corporation, a subsidiary of ALLETE, Inc.

The transaction adds another 40,000 residents in the central part of the state and complements Aqua's current concentration of customers in the Sarasota area, bringing the total number of residents served in Florida to 100,000. Press Release_ 7/1/04

June, 2004
Colorado water now on Nasdaq stock market: Pure Cycle Corp. owns rights to Lowry Range water
Pure Cycle completed its stock offering and its Nasdaq ticket symbol is PCYO. The Thornton, Colorado company owns the right to provide water for a massive proposed development on the state's eastern plains.  Rocky Mountain News_ 6/29/04

T. Boone Pickens working on water deal to sell water under his Texas panhandle land to Dallas or San Antonio
The oil and gas veteran expects to make a deal this year with either the Dallas Metroplex or San Antonio to sell 200,000 acre feet of water from the Ogallala Aquifer in the Texas panhandle, which is about the amount of water San Antonio uses in a year. Pickens' water deal, which he has pursued over the last four years through his Mesa Water Co., has drawn controversy. But the water comes from beneath ranch lands owned by Pickens and his neighbors in four Panhandle counties. Houston Business Journal_ 6/22/04

Duluth, Min.-based Allete Inc. completes sale of Heater Utilities Inc., its North Carolina-based water and wastewater systems
Aqua America Inc. bought Heater Utilities (formerly Philadelphia Suburban Corp.) for $48 million in cash and the assumption of about $28 million in debt. Duluth News Tribune_ 6/2/04

RWE Thames Water, the world's third-biggest water supply company, pulls out of Shanghai treatment plant project
The Chinese government changed rules on the rate of return for such investments. The plan originally called for Thames Water, a unit of German utilities conglomerate RWE AG, to run the plant for 20 years before handing it over to the government -- to enable the foreign company to recoup its investment. AP/San Francisco Chronicle_ 6/2/04

Manila Water Co. in deal with International Finance Corp. to take a stake in the utility before its planned initial public offering next year

The move comes as Manila Water continues to raise funds for its ambitious upgrade of Manila's water system. The IFC, an arm of the World Bank which works with private-sector companies, will pay up to $15 million for shares equivalent to around 8% or 9% in the Philippine utility and extend Manila Water a $30 million loan, following a previous loan of $30 million it made in 2003. Philippine conglomerate Ayala Corp. controls a 52.7% stake in Manila Water, while United Utilities PLC of the U.K. and Japan's Mitsubishi Corp. are also major shareholders with 18.6% and 10.7%, respectively. The joint venture won a competitive bid in 1997 to take over the formerly state-owned water supply and sewage system in eastern Manila, with a mandate to significantly improve service. Another company, Maynilad Water Services Inc., won the concession for western Manila.  Dow Jones/Yahoo News_ 6/1/04

May, 2004

CUNO to buy water filtration firm WTC Industries for $110 million
Meriden, Connecticut-based CUNO Inc. makes filtration products for liquids and gases. Its products are used in the fluid processing, health care and potable water markets. WTC, which is based in Eagan, Minnesota, through its PentaPure Inc. operating unit makes water filtration systems and replacement filter cartridges.  Reuters_ 5/26/04

French utility Veolia Environnement wins two contracts in China worth a combined $276.3 million (230 million euros)
Veolia said in a statement it had won a 210 million euro deal over 35 years to renovate two drinking water factories in southern China. It also won a 10 million euro contract over 20 years to build and run a water purification plant near the Olympic Village site in Beijing. Reuters_ 5/19/04

Pictet sees rich pickings in water industry
Private investors fleeing the turbulence of mainstream equity holdings should look at water companies seizing the opportunity presented by years of U.S. underinvestment, Pictet Funds said on Monday. Total consumption of water since 1900 has increased nine-fold and currently demand outstrips world population growth by around 2-3 percent per annum.  Reuters_ 5/17/04

UK water firm Pennon Group Plc rejects $1.75 billion takeover approach from Guy Hands' investment group Terra Firma
Pennon said it had decided instead to try to buy assets from UK waste management firm Shanks, adding Terra Firma's approach "failed to recognise the strategic value" of the firm.  Reuters_ 5/17/04

Guy Hands seeks to buy Pennon Group Plc, the water utility for Southwestern England

Guy Hands is the financier who led takeovers of companies including Le Meridien hotels. Hands' buyout company is Terra Firma Capital Partners Ltd. Bloomberg_ 5/16/04

Siemens buys US Filter's water systems from Veolia Environnement for $993 million

The move brings the German engineering group closer to rival General Electric in the world's biggest water market. "More acquisitions aren't ruled out here," a Siemens spokesman said. "We want to make a splash, not mess about with small stuff."The US Filter businesses acquired by Siemens have annual sales of $1.2 billion and employ around 5,800 people worldwide. The deal allows Veolia to rid itself of a troubled business inherited from former parent Vivendi which has cost it billions of euros in writedowns. Reuters_ 5/12/04

Hoover's fact sheet on US Filter

Southwest Water Company to buy 87 water utilities and 12 wastewater utilities in Texas and Oklahoma from Tecon Water Holdings, L.P for $63 million

Pending regulatory approval, the transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2004. The Tecon utilities currently serve approximately 21,000 water and 4,000 wastewater connections in Texas and 250 water and wastewater connections in Oklahoma. Press Release/Business Wire_ 5/3/04

New Mexico Water Service Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of California Water Service Group, buys New Mexico's National Utility Company for about $1 million

National Utility serves 700 customers adjacent to New Mexico Water's Middle Rio Grande water system and 950 water customers 150 miles south of Albuquerque. The acquisition increases New Mexico Water's customer count by 40%. Press Release/Business Wire_ 5/3/04

April, 2004
Trojan Technologies recalls 12,500 home water disinfection systems, saying they may pose a fire hazard

The TrojanUVMax(R) Water Disinfection Systems, valued at $500 to $1,500 each, have an improperly soldered "pin" that connects the ultraviolet light bulb to the system. Trojan will replace the system's lamp bulb free of charge. London Free Press_ 4/29/04

Spain's power utility Union Fenosa sells British water utility Cambridge Water to CKI Holdings of Hong Kong for 51.4 million pounds ($91.8 million)
In addition CKI will assume 4.9 million pounds of Cambridge debt, the Spanish frim said in a statement. The sale is part of the Spanish company's strategy of selling non-core assets to pay off debt. Reuters_ 4/28/04

Allete Inc.'s subsidiary Florida Water Services Corp. sells last of its water network--72 water and wastewater systems--to Aqua America Inc. for $18 million
As part of its plan to exit the water business, Allete has been selling off water utility assets for the past year. In November, Allete struck a separate deal to sell its North Carolina-based Heater Utilities Inc. unit to Aqua America for $48 million. Aqua America is a publicly traded water company serving about 2.5 million residents in 14 states. Duluth News Tribune_ 4/24/04

Standard &Poor's revises American States Water Co. corporate credit rating to 'A-' from 'A+'
The outlook is negative. S&P said the action reflects the company's weakened financial profile and dependence on the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) to provide adequate rate recovery to offset increased operating and capital costs. AWR's creditworthiness is based principally on AWR's main subsidiary, Southern California Water Co., which has experienced declining financial measures due to delayed recovery of power costs incurred during the western power crisis, adverse weather, and increased operating and capital costs related to water quality needs. Reuters_ 4/22/04

American States' response to the S&P credit rating change

President and Chief Executive Officer Floyd E. Wicks stated: "While we understand the concerns expressed by S&P regarding timely and adequate rate relief, significant progress has been made, beginning late in the first quarter of 2004, to generate increased cash flow through rate increases. Press Release_ 4/22/04

Defense contractor Teledyne to buy water quality monitor Isco
Teledyne Technologies Inc. plans to buy Isco Inc., a maker of water quality monitoring products, for about $80 million, the companies said. Reuters_ 4/9/04

Easton, Pennsylvania, picks Miller Environmental as water, sewage operator
The company's one-year proposal was 23 percent cheaper than the next lowest bidder, United Water, city public services Director David Hopkins said. United Water's 10-year contract to run the plants expires April 28. Express-Times/NJ.com_ 4/8/04

March, 2004

Philippines backtracks on financial rescue of  Maynilad Water Services
Maynilad, a joint venture of the local conglomerate Benpres Holdings and Suez of France, won the 1997 bid to operate the water system in the western half of Manila for 25 years. It suspended debt payments and filed for corporate rehabilitation in November last year after six years of losses due to regulatory troubles. More than two-thirds of the water produced by the company is lost to leaks and theft. Financial Times 3/31/04

Aqua America subsidiary purchases two North Carolina water and wastewater systems
Aqua America, Inc. announced its North Carolina subsidiary, Aqua North Carolina, Inc., has purchased a water and wastewater system in New Hanover County near Wilmington and another water system in the Glencroft Subdivision near Newton in Catawba County. Collectively, the systems serve more than 1,000 residents. Press Release 3/31/04

China water-treatment firm set for SGX listing
Another China water-treatment company is hoping to make a splash on the Singapore Exchange. United Envirotech (UE), an environmental solutions provider, has lodged its preliminary prospectus with the Monetary Authority of Singapore for a mainboard listing. Business Times 3/20/04

New York's Saratoga Spring Water Co. is tapping into something profitable
This is where Adam Madkour, president and chief operating officer of the 131-year-old Saratoga Spring Water Co., comes in. The Saratogian 03/07/2004

Veolia tumbles to loss after asset writedowns
French utilities group Veolia Environnement posted a wider-than-expected annual net loss on Monday, stung by a large asset writedown in the first half, but stuck to its sales growth targets for 2004 and 2005. Veolia is one of the world's top suppliers of water and waste treatment services. Reuters 3/8/04

Veolia offers EU500 million for 49-percent stake in Gelsenwasser: sources say
French utilities group Veolia Environnement has offered to buy a 49-percent stake in German water group Gelsenwasser from Bochum and Dortmund for 500 million euros ($610 million), sources close to the matter said on Wednesday. AFP/Terra Daily 3/3/04

February 2004

Pennsylvania's York Water Company reports record earnings for 2003. Credits customer growth and increased rates. Press Release/Business Wire 2/24/03

Fitch assigns a 'AA' rating to the New York City Municipal Water Finance Authority's (NYW) approximately $348 million water and sewer system revenue bonds. Press Release/Business Wire 2/23/04

Russia to allow private ownership of bodies of water. No. Lake Baikal isn't for sale. Think smaller. Pravda 2/19/04

Fitch rates Arlington, Texas' $15 million water and wastewater revenue bonds 'AA+ '. Press Release/Business Wire 2/19/04

India's Kerala state bans Coke plant from using groundwater. Decision unjustifiable, says Coke. AP/San Francisco Chronicle 2/18/04

Western Water Company announces 4th quarter losses for 2003. No stock dividends due to financial setback from expiration of water sales with city of Inglewood, California.  Press Release/Business Wire 2/18/04

Layne Christensen Co.'s Water Treatment Division wins contracts worth $5 million. Projects are in Delaware and California. Kansas City Business Journal 2/16/04
Aqua Water Supply Corp. seeks wastewater business in one of the largest Texas applications in 20 years. Firm already supplies area drinking water. Austin Business Journal 2/16/04

Feature: Companies hope profits flow from clean water. Its importance to industry is increasingly recognized. NY Times 2/15/04

Ontario, Canada to charge water bottlers. Companies that take water from Ontario lakes and streams will have to pay for it. Toronto Star 2/12/04

Home water filters in high demand after lead discovered in Washington, D.C. water. Several thousand homes affected. AP/ABC 7 News 2/9/04

Chinese wastewater treatment firm Bio-Treat Technology launches an IPO from Singapore to raise S$107 million. Channel News Asia 2/9/04

French utility firm Veolia Environnement selling farmland to California's Imperial Irrigation District for $77.3 million cash. Reuters 2/6/04

Fitch rates Wisconsin's $116 million clean water revenue bondss 'AA+'. Press Release/Business Wire 2/6/04

Bottled or filtered? The filtered water market is growing faster than bottled in offices and homes. Tribune-Review/Pittsburgh Live 2/5/04

ITT, GE and others hope to capitalize on global water treatment market. AP/San Jose Mercury News 2/5/04

Feature: Corporate water recycling isn't common in Massachusetts--yet. Commercial recycling leaders check out the possibilities. Boston Globe 2/5/04

Veolia Environnement, one of the world's biggest water suppliers, reports 2003 revenue slightly under forecasts. Veolia, formerly owned by Vivendi, and rival Suez are unloading unprofitable assets.  Reuters 2/4/04

Fitch ratess Tampa Bay Water, Florida's $110 million utility refunding revenue bonds 'AA-'Press Release/Business Wire 2/4/04

Fitch rates Rio Rancho, New Mexico's $4.4 million water and wastewater revenue bonds 'A-'.

Business Wire 2/2/04

Singapore woman's thirst for education leads to creation of Hyflux Ltd., one of Asia's most successful water purification firms.   AFP/Channel News Asia 2/1/04

January, 2004

CH2M Hill to design world's largest ultrafiltration membrane installation for drinking water treatment. The $9.1 million project is in the Peel region in Ontario, Canada. Press Release 1/29/04

Detroit water board approves rate increases opposed by the suburbs. Detroit Free Press 1/29/04

California Water Services Group announces increased revenues and earnings for 4th quarter. Cal Water is the parent of five water companies serving 2 million people in four western states. Press Release/Business Wire 1/28/04

British-American consortium wins consulting contract for Bahrain desalination plant. Binnie Black & Veatch already at work on the design phase of the Hidd power and water project. Gulf Daily News 1/27/04

Belgian mineral water company Spadel acquires French counterpart Grandes Sources de Wattwiller. 1/26/04

Black & Veatch proposes $2 billion restoration of California's Salton Sea. Clean, then sell water. Imperial Valley Press 1/23/04

Connecticut-based Poseidon Resources Corp. wins approval from the Carlsbad, California city council to move ahead with its $270 million desalination plant. But the firm still is at loggerheads with the San Diego Water Authority and needs state coastal approval. San 1/22/04

American States Water Co. books $3.5 million charge to earnings in the fourth quarter of 2003. It reflects refunds that subsidiary Southern California Water Co. must make to customers for groundwater contamination . Reuters 1/21/04

French utility Suez pulling out of much-hearalded Puerto Rico water management deal. Suez is working to meet strict profibility goals. Cites tougher than expected economic conditions. Reuters 1/14/04

Consolidated Water Co. Ltd. completes tender offer for Bahamas' Waterfields Company Limited. Waterfiellds owns and operates desalination plant. Press Release/Biz Ink 1/14/04 

Small Arizona community looks at buying its water company. Consultant gives them the numbers.  Payson Roundup 1/13/04

Thames Water talks with the Shanghai government to buy a 50-percent stake in state-owned Shanghai Waterworks Shibei Co, sources say.  Shanghai Daily 1/12/04

General Electric and Pall Corporation form alliance to serve industrial water markets. Pall filtration and purification products will be used in GE equipment. Press Release/Business Wire 1/9/04

Canada's Trojan Technologies wins Dutch water board contract for Europe's largest ultraviolet treatment system. The 3.8 million Euro Waterbedrijf Europoort (WBE) contract will supply water to 1.5 million people. Press Release/Edie weekly summaries 1/8/04

View from Mount Everest: a whole different way of looking at water purification. Mount Everest Net 1/6/04

West Virginia Public Service Commission rejects request from West Virginia-American Water to raise its rates by 15 percent. Cities and counties opposed the increase saying it would create economic hardship.  Charleston Gazette 1/3/04

Pentair Inc. expands its water-filtration line with $215 million purchase of Illinois-based Everpure Inc. Water filtration has become a big part of Pentair's business in recent years. AP/Miami Herald 1/3/04


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