The Laclede Group, Inc. announced Tuesday that it will add more than 100,000 customers in Alabama and Mississippi with the $344 million acquisition of EnergySouth, Inc. of Mobile, Ala.
The purchase aligns with the recent growth strategy for Laclede, the St. Louis-based utility holding company, which said in a release the deal fits with its “focus on growth through acquiring and organically growing gas utilities.” The acquisition also helps Laclede add to its footprint in the South, where it has made other recent deals.
Laclede is purchasing EnergySouth from Sempra U.S. Gas & Power, a unit of Sempra Energy. EnergySouth serves 85,000 customers in Alabama as Mobile Gas. It has another 19,000 customers in Mississippi as Willmut Gas.
“These additions allow us to build on our significant presence in Alabama, where we are the largest natural gas distribution company in the state, and expands our geographic reach into Mississippi,” Suzanne Sitherwood, the Laclede Group’s president and chief executive officer, said in a release.
The deal comes just days before Laclede is expected to undergo a name change. The utility announced in March that it would change its name to Spire on April 28 in an effort to unify several businesses it’s recently acquired under one name.