EDMONTON, Alberta, Feb. 14, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- EPCOR Utilities Inc. (EPCOR) today filed its annual and fourth quarter results for 2018.

“EPCOR had a solid year in 2018 with financial results in-line with expectations and good operational results across our business segments,” said Stuart Lee, EPCOR President & CEO. “EPCOR’s results can be directly attributed to the strength of our people, and a commitment to their continuing growth and development.”

“EPCOR continued to build capacity in our operations and to grow in our target geographies,” said Mr. Lee. “This included electricity distribution in Ontario, a pending water and wastewater acquisition in Arizona, and an investment in a water transmission pipeline project in central Texas. With a strong and sustainable long-term growth outlook, EPCOR increased its annual dividend to its Shareholder – The City of Edmonton – by $5 million, reaching $171 million for 2019.”

Highlights of EPCOR’s financial performance are as follows:

  • Net income was $107 million and $295 million for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2018, respectively, compared to net income of $87 million and $256 million for the comparative periods in 2017, respectively. The increase of $20 million for the three months ended December 31, 2018, was primarily due to higher Adjusted EBITDA, higher income tax recovery, higher transmission system access service charge net collections and lower finance expense, partially offset by higher unfavorable fair value adjustments related to financial electricity purchase contracts, as well as, higher depreciation expense. The increase of $39 million for the twelve months ended December 31, 2018, was primarily due to higher Adjusted EBITDA and higher income tax recovery, partially offset by higher unfavorable fair value adjustments related to financial electricity purchase contracts, lower transmission system access service charge net collections, as well as, higher finance and depreciation expense.
     
  • Adjusted EBITDA was $182 million and $700 million for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2018, respectively, compared to $170 million and $588 million for the comparative periods in 2017, respectively. The increase of $12 million for the three months ended December 31, 2018, was primarily due to higher electricity distribution customer rates and higher Energy Price Setting Plan (EPSP) margins, partially offset by lower water sales volumes. The increase of $112 million for the twelve months ended December 31, 2018, was primarily due to twelve months of Adjusted EBITDA from drainage utility services (Drainage) in 2018 compared to four months of Adjusted EBITDA in 2017, as the operations were transferred to the Company in September 2017, higher water and wastewater revenues due to higher rates and customer growth, and higher electricity distribution customer rates, partially offset by lower EPSP margins.
  • Investment in capital projects and acquisitions was $269 million and $653 million for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2018, respectively, compared with $236 million and $634 million for the corresponding periods in the previous year, respectively. The $19 million increase for the twelve months ended December 31, 2018, was primarily due to higher spending in the Water Services segment primarily related to a full year of capital additions for the Drainage operations, partially offset by lower spending in the Distribution and Transmission segment on the Advanced Meter Infrastructure project and the Work Centre Redevelopment project, both of which were substantially completed in 2017, as well as, lower spending on acquisitions in 2018 compared to 2017.  

Management’s discussion and analysis and the audited annual consolidated financial statements are available on EPCOR’s website (www.epcor.com) and SEDAR (www.sedar.com).

EPCOR, through its wholly owned subsidiaries, builds, owns and operates electrical, natural gas and water transmission and distribution networks, water and wastewater treatment facilities and sanitary and stormwater systems, and infrastructure in Canada and the United States. The Company also provides electricity, natural gas and water products and services to residential and commercial customers. EPCOR, headquartered in Edmonton, is an Alberta Top 70 employer. EPCOR’s website address is www.epcor.com.

For more information, contact:

Media Relations:
Kelly Struski (780) 969-8238
kstruski@epcor.com 
Corporate Relations:
Matt Lemay (780) 412-3711 or toll free (877) 969-8280
mlemay@epcor.com

Management’s Discussion and Analysis can be viewed at http://resource.globenewswire.com/Resource/Download/2677889e-cdca-49ff-a789-e5c6d637a9ce