Artesian Resources Corp. in discussions to purchase Tidewater Utilities from Middlesex Water Company

Artesian Resources Corporation and Middlesex Water Company today announced that they are in negotiations regarding the sale of Middlesex's Delaware subsidiary, Tidewater Utilities, Inc. to Artesian.

Sep 17th, 2001

NEWARK, Del., and ISELIN, N.J., Sept. 17, 2001 — Artesian Resources Corporation and Middlesex Water Company today announced that they are in negotiations regarding the sale of Middlesex's Delaware subsidiary, Tidewater Utilities, Inc. to Artesian.

Any agreement resulting from these negotiations would be subject to approval by the Boards of Directors of Artesian and Middlesex and the Delaware Public Service Commission.

According to Dian C. Taylor, Chief Executive Officer and Chair of the Board of Artesian Resources Corporation, "Artesian's top priority is providing customers with superior water quality and service at a reasonable cost. We are excited by the possibility of extending these services to more communities in Delaware. There is no doubt that customers will be the winners if the Tidewater system is integrated with Artesian's."

"The decision to negotiate a purchase agreement is in the best interest of our customers, shareholders and employees," said J. Richard Tompkins, Chairman of Middlesex Water Company and Chairman and President of Tidewater Utilities, Inc. "Both Tidewater and Artesian have geographically independent systems that can be consolidated into regionally integrated systems producing efficiencies via shared systems and interconnections. In addition, combining the two customer bases would result in greater economies of scale, a more centralized and efficient administration, and subsequently, better service to customers," added Tompkins.

Artesian Resources Corporation, through its wholly owned subsidiary Artesian Water Company, is the oldest and largest investor owned regulated public water utility in the state of Delaware. In operation since 1905, Artesian Water serves approximately 66,000 metered customers, an estimated 214,000 people representing about 27% of Delaware's total population. Artesian serves customers in all three Delaware counties.

Tidewater Utilities, Inc., a Delaware corporation, is a wholly owned subsidiary of Middlesex Water Company.

Middlesex, one of the domestic investor owned water utilities in New Jersey, purchased Tidewater Utilities in 1992. At the time, Tidewater Utilities served 3,200 customers in Sussex and Kent Counties. Due to continued development, and with the acquisition of Public Water Supply Company in 1997, by January 2001, Tidewater's customer base had grown to more than 16,000.

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