SAN DIEGO, April 2, 2008 – Following the completion yesterday of the transaction with The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) to form a commodities-marketing joint venture, Sempra Energy (NYSE: SRE) has initiated a $1 billion share-repurchase program.
Sempra Energy will use $1 billion of the more than $1 billion in net proceeds from the RBS transaction to repurchase common shares under an accelerated program at a discount to the average trading price (subject to a minimum and maximum number of shares) over a period expected to extend into the fourth quarter 2008. This share repurchase comprises the initial portion of the company’s plan to purchase $1.5 billion to $2 billion of its common shares.
Also, as previously announced, Sempra Energy’s board of directors expects to increase the dividend on common shares by 9 percent to $1.40 per share on an annualized basis from the current annualized rate of $1.28 per share, beginning with the declaration of the quarterly dividend payable in July 2008. The new increased quarterly dividend is expected to be declared June 17, 2008, and would be payable July 15, 2008, to shareholders of record on June 27, 2008. Sempra Energy expects to maintain a targeted dividend payout ratio of 35 percent to 40 percent of net income.
Both the share-repurchase program and expected dividend increase were disclosed originally in July 2007, when Sempra Energy and RBS announced their commodities-marketing joint venture.
Sempra Energy, based in San Diego, is a Fortune 500 energy services holding company with 2007 revenues of more than $11 billion. The Sempra Energy companies’ 13,500 employees serve more than 29 million consumers worldwide.
This press release contains statements that are not historical fact and constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. When the company uses words like “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “intends,” “plans,” “estimates,” “may,” “would,” ”could,” “should” or similar expressions, or when the company discusses its strategy or plans, the company is making forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of performance. They involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. Future results may differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are necessarily based upon various assumptions involving judgments with respect to the future and other risks, including, among others: local, regional, national and international economic, competitive, political, legislative and regulatory conditions and developments; actions by the California Public Utilities Commission, California State Legislature, California Department of Water Resources, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Federal Reserve Board, U.K. Financial Services Authority, and other regulatory bodies in the United States and other countries; capital market conditions, inflation rates, interest rates and exchange rates; energy and trading markets, including the timing and extent of changes in commodity prices; the availability of natural gas, electric power and liquefied natural gas; weather conditions and conservation efforts; war and terrorist attacks; business, regulatory, environmental, and legal decisions and requirements; the status of deregulation of retail natural gas and electricity delivery; the timing and success of business development efforts; the resolution of litigation; and other uncertainties, all of which are difficult to predict and many of which are beyond the control of the company. These risks and uncertainties are further discussed in the company’s reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission that are available through the EDGAR system without charge at its Web site, www.sec.gov and on the company’s Web site, www.sempra.com. Sempra LNG and Sempra Pipelines & Storage are not the same companies as the utilities, SDG&E or SoCalGas, and are not regulated by the California Public Utilities Commission. Sempra Energy Trading, doing business as Sempra Commodities, and Sempra Generation are not the same companies as the utilities, SDG&E or SoCalGas, and the California Public Utilities Commission does not regulate the terms of their products and services.