Federal approvals boost likelihood of Duke-Progress Energy merger

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Progress Energy and Duke Energy said Monday they will push to finish a merger by July 1, after getting key federal approvals last week, reports the News Service of Florida. The companies, which have long sought to move forward with the merger, said in a news release that they will file documents accepting conditions set by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. “Receiving FERC’s conditional orders last Friday is a major milestone for this transaction,” Bill Johnson, chairman, president and CEO of Progress Energy, said in the news release. “Both companies have accelerated the integration planning efforts necessary to complete this transaction by July 1 and begin to deliver the substantial benefits of the merger as soon as possible.” Progress Energy’s Florida subsidiary is the second-largest electricity provider in the state, behind Florida Power & Light. The merger had been snagged because of market concerns in North Carolina, where Progress and Duke are both based. The companies still need approvals from the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) and Public Service Commission of South Carolina (PSCSC).

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.