A sound investment, Puget Energy is the holding company for one of Washington State's largest utilities, Puget Sound Energy. The utility provides electricity to almost 1.1 million customers and natural gas to almost 760,900 customers in 11 counties in western Washington. Puget Sound Energy owns fossil-fueled and hydroelectric plants as well as wind farms with a cumulative total of 4,707 MW of capacity. It is one of the largest wind energy producers in the US with 430 MW of capacity. The utility has more than 2,600 miles of power transmission lines and 20,500 miles of distribution lines. Puget Sound Energy also has about 12,000 miles of gas mains, and about 13,000 miles of gas service lines.
Puget Energy's business strategy is to generate stable earnings and cash flow by offering cost-effective and reliable electric and natural gas service through Puget Sound Energy, the largest and oldest utility based in Washington State.
The company has committed to invest $5 billion between 2008 and 2013 to add to and/or improve the company's aging infrastructure. To meet growing demand, in 2010 Puget Energy acquired two 54-MW, natural gas-fired power generators it had previously operated under a lease at its Fredonia Generating Station in Skagit County. The deal boosted the growth of its long term power supply since 2005 to more than 1,700 MW.
In 2010, Puget Holdings LLC, a consortium led by Australian bank unit Macquarie Infrastructure Partners, acquired Puget Energy for $7.4 billion. The deal strengthens Puget Energy's access to cash to pay down debt and to fund future growth.
An electric rate increase helped to boost the utility's electric revenues in 2010, although a gas rate decrease dragged down both Puget Energy's gas sales and the company's overall revenues that year. Unrealized losses on derivative instruments of $168 million, an increase in depreciation and amortization expenses, and a number of other factors saw the company's net income plummet sharply in 2010.
Revenues picked up by 6% in 2011, largely due to cooler-than-usual weather driving up retail gas demand. Net income rose sharply, primarily thanks to lower purchased power and electric generation fuel costs.
In 2011 Puget Energy promoted president (and company veteran) Kimberly Harris to CEO, succeeding the retiring Steve Reynolds. – less