Fortis Inc. announces offering of senior unsecured debentures


    ST. JOHN'S, June 23 /CNW/ - Fortis Inc. ("Fortis" or the "Corporation")
(TSX:FTS) announced today that it is filing a preliminary prospectus with
securities regulatory authorities in each of the provinces of Canada in
connection with the offering and sale to the public (the "Offering") of senior
unsecured debentures of the Corporation (the "Debentures"). The Offering will
be made through a syndicate of agents co-led by BMO Nesbitt Burns Inc. and
CIBC World Markets Inc. (collectively, the "Agents").
    The Corporation expects to enter into an agency agreement with the Agents
prior to filing its final prospectus in respect of the Offering, which
agreement will set forth the terms of the Offering, including the size of the
Offering, the annual interest rate payable in respect of the Debentures and
the maturity date of the Debentures.
    The net proceeds of the Offering will be used to repay in full the
indebtedness outstanding under the Corporation's credit facility and for
general corporate purposes.
    The Offering is subject to the receipt of all necessary regulatory
approvals. The Debentures will not be listed on any stock exchange.
    The Debentures will not be registered under the U.S. Securities Act of
1933, as amended, and may not be offered or sold in the United States absent
registration or an applicable exemption from the registration requirements.
This media release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation
of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any offer, solicitation or sale of the
securities in any state in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be

    Fortis is the largest investor-owned distribution utility in Canada. With
total assets approaching $12 billion and annual revenues totalling $3.9
billion, the Corporation serves more than 2,000,000 gas and electricity
customers. Its regulated holdings include electric distribution utilities in
five Canadian provinces and three Caribbean countries and a natural gas
utility in British Columbia. Fortis owns non-regulated generation assets
across Canada and in Belize and Upper New York State. It also owns hotels and
commercial real estate in Canada. The Corporation's common shares are listed
on the Toronto Stock Exchange and trade under the symbol FTS. Additional
information can be accessed at or

    Fortis includes forward-looking information in this media release within
the meaning of applicable securities laws in Canada ("forward-looking
information"). The purpose of the forward-looking information is to provide
management's expectations regarding the Corporation's future growth, results
of operations, performance, business prospects and opportunities and may not
be appropriate for other purposes. All forward-looking information is given
pursuant to the "safe harbour" provisions of applicable Canadian securities
legislation. The words "anticipates", "believes", "could", "estimates",
"expects", "forecasts", "intends", "may", "might", "plans", "projects",
"schedule", "should", "will", "would" and similar expressions are often
intended to identify forward-looking information, although not all
forward-looking information contains these identifying words. The
forward-looking information reflects management's current beliefs and is based
on information currently available to the Corporation's management. The
forward-looking information in this media release includes the Corporation's
expectation of entering into an agency agreement with the Agents prior to
filing its final prospectus in respect of the Offering and the Corporation's
expected use of the net proceeds from the Offering. The forecasts and
projections that make up the forward-looking information are based on
assumptions which include, but are not limited to: the receipt of applicable
regulatory approvals and requested rate orders; no significant operational
disruptions or environmental liability due to a catastrophic event or
environmental upset caused by severe weather, other acts of nature or other
major event; the continued ability to maintain the gas and electricity systems
to ensure their continued performance; no significant decline in capital
spending in 2009; no severe and prolonged downturn in economic conditions;
sufficient liquidity and capital resources; the continuation of
regulator-approved mechanisms to flow through the commodity cost of natural
gas and energy supply costs in customer rates; the continued ability to hedge
exposures to fluctuations in interest rates, foreign exchange rates and
natural gas commodity prices; no significant variability in interest rates; no
significant counterparty defaults; the continued competitiveness of natural
gas pricing when compared with electricity and other alternative sources of
energy; the continued availability of natural gas supply; the continued
ability to fund defined benefit pension plans; the absence of significant
changes in government energy plans and environmental laws that may materially
affect the operations and cash flows of the Corporation and its subsidiaries;
maintenance of adequate insurance coverage; the ability to obtain and maintain
licences and permits; retention of existing service areas; no material
decrease in market energy sales prices; favourable relations with First
Nations; favourable labour relations; and sufficient human resources to
deliver service and execute the capital program. The forward-looking
information is subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors that could
cause actual results to differ materially from historical results or results
anticipated by the forward-looking information. Factors which could cause
results or events to differ from current expectations include, but are not
limited to: regulatory risk; operating and maintenance risks; economic
conditions; capital resources and liquidity risk; weather and seasonality; an
ultimate resolution of the expropriation of the assets of the Exploits River
Hydro Partnership that differs from what is currently expected by management;
commodity price risk; derivative financial instruments and hedging; interest
rate risk; counterparty risk; competitiveness of natural gas; natural gas
supply; defined benefit pension plan performance and funding requirements;
risks related to the development of the Terasen Gas (Vancouver Island) Inc.
franchise; the Government of British Columbia's Energy Plan; environmental
risks; insurance coverage risk; an unexpected outcome of legal proceedings
currently against the Corporation; licences and permits; loss of service area;
market energy sales prices; transition to International Financial Reporting
Standards; changes in tax legislation; First Nations' lands; labour relations;
and human resources. For additional information with respect to the
Corporation's risk factors and risk factors relating to the Debentures,
reference should be made to the Corporation's preliminary short form
prospectus dated June 23, 2009 and the continuous disclosure materials filed
from time to time with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and to the
heading "Business Risk Management" in the Management Discussion and Analysis
for the three months ended March 31, 2009 and for the year ended December 31,
    All forward-looking information in this media release is qualified in its
entirety by the above cautionary statements and, except as required by law,
the Corporation undertakes no obligation to revise or update any
forward-looking information as a result of new information, future events or

    Not for distribution to U.S. news wire services or dissemination in the
United States.

For further information:

For further information: Mr. Barry Perry, Vice President, Finance and
Chief Financial Officer, Fortis Inc., Phone: (709) 737-2800, Fax: (709)

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