CenterPoint Energy to sell natural gas retail business for $400m

first_imgCenterPoint Energy will use the net proceeds of the deal to repay a portion of its debt CenterPoint Energy to sell CenterPoint Energy Services to Energy Capital Partners. (Credit: Pixabay/Gerd Altmann) US-based electric and natural gas utility company, CenterPoint Energy has agreed to sell CenterPoint Energy Services (CES), a natural gas retail business to Energy Capital Partners (ECP) for about $400m.Headquartered in Houston, CES has around 300 employees. The company provides natural gas sales, storage, supply, and other energy-related solutions to about 30,000 commercial and industrial customers, utilities and cities in more than 30 states.As part of the deal, CES will sign a structured long-term Preferred Supply agreement, where Shell Energy North America (SENA) will deliver gas supply, collateral support and receive equity warrants.CenterPoint Energy interim president and CEO John W. Somerhalder II said: “The sale of our gas retail business further positions CenterPoint Energy to focus on the long-term performance of our core electric and natural gas utility businesses.“At the same time, this sale will strengthen our balance sheet and improve our business risk profile.“When combined with our recent agreement to sell Miller Pipeline and Minnesota Limited, two businesses that comprised our infrastructure services segment, we expect our utility earnings contribution to approach 90% over the next several years.”CenterPoint Energy to use sale proceeds to reduce debtCenterPoint Energy said that it will use the net proceeds of the deal to repay a portion of its debt.Subjected to the satisfaction of closing conditions, which include the expiration or termination of the Hart-Scott-Rodino waiting period, the deal is expected to be completed in the second quarter of this year.For the deal, Goldman Sachs & Co is acting as exclusive financial advisor to CenterPoint Energy, while Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld is serving as its legal counsel.Earlier this month, CenterPoint Energy has agreed to sell Miller Pipeline and Minnesota to PowerTeam Services for $850m.The Miller Pipeline and Minnesota are claimed to be the two of the premier natural gas distribution and transmission pipeline contractors in the US and provide services to customers in 35 states.last_img read more

ORE Catapult to Host Grid Connection Workshop

first_imgThe Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult is holding a workshop together with Narec Distributed Energy on the topic of connecting renewable energy and battery technologies to the electricity grid.The Grid Emulation System (eGrid): Grid Connection workshop will take place on 20 September at ORE Catapult’s testing facilities in Blyth, UK, and is open to businesses, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), sole traders and researchers operating in the fields of renewables, smart grids and storage.According to Narec, the aim of the event is to help delegates understand and avoid problems related to connecting different systems to the grid. The topics to be covered include grid codes, the coming changes in 2019, common issues and the best ways to work with Distribution Network Operators.The attendees are free to bring questions based on problems they are experiencing within their own schemes.“We’re proud to be offering this workshop alongside ORE Catapult. We know about the common issues that can arise when trying to connect to the grid and are we always looking to share our expertise with businesses working in the industry,” said Bryan Dixon, Senior Electrical Design Engineer at Narec.“The range of industry experts and academia speaking at the event will provide important information to the companies attending. The question and answer section of the event will be especially beneficial as it will allow us to really go into detail about the issues most businesses face when it comes to grid connection. I would recommend that people attending come prepared with questions that they would like addressed to really make the most of this free session.”The workshop is being organized as part of the eGrid project, a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) project that allowed ORE Catapult to install one of the world’s most advanced Grid Emulation System at its Blyth center. Registration and attendance are free.last_img read more

DeSantis announces plan to provide $140M for new affordable housing

first_imgFlorida governor Ron DeSantis announced a plan to provide $140 million for the construction of new affordable housing in areas that were deeply affected by Hurricane Irma in 2017.DeSantis announced an agreement between the state Department of Economic Opportunity and the Florida Housing Finance Corp. during an appearance in Marathon on Thursday.The funding is reportedly awarded by DEO’s Rebuild Florida program and will be administered by Florida Housing.The new plan allows housing developers and public housing authorities to apply for the funding, which must address unmet needs in areas identified as “most-impacted and distressed” by the federal government.All developments funded will be required to meet a specific criterion which includes Green Building Standards Energy Efficiency Standards, Accessibility and Visitability Standards, and Resiliency Standards.“This has been a problem in recent years, but the recent storms, Hurricanes Irma and Michael, have exacerbated the problem,” DeSantis said. “This will be an important step in the recovery process.”The money will be provided through the Rebuild Florida Workforce Housing Program, a partnership of the Department of Economic Opportunity and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development that was launched last year.About 15,000 families have already registered for the program, according to DeSantis.Hurricane Irma made initial landfall in Monroe County, which includes Marathon, Key West, and other nearby areas.Monroe County is expected to get about $35 million of the funding, according to Department of Economic Opportunity Executive Director Ken Lawson.Click here to learn more.last_img read more

Gogos kick butt for Mandela Day

first_imgA group of senior citizens recently competed in a beading competition with several celebrities in Cape Town. (Image: YouTube)It takes less than an hour for elders of the Relate Bracelets to make a clear message: do not mess with us and our skill. Several celebrities had tried, for 67 minutes on 14 July, to keep up with these seniors in an annual “Bead Off” competition in Cape Town.This was one of many events by South Africans for Nelson Mandela International Day. On the day, people show that they care about others by completing an act of kindness or volunteering for a good cause. The day – declared by the UN – is marked on 18 July, Madiba’s birthday, but the Nelson Mandela Foundation, Brand South Africa and other organisations have asked the country’s citizens to make every day of July a Mandela Day.Mandela Day month was officially launched on 6 July.THE BEAD OFFThis year marked the second annual Bead Off of Relate Bracelets. In the good-natured competition, Gogos show off their beading skill against celebrities and other well-known people. In 2014, they competed against Western Cape DHL Stormers’ Juan de Jongh, Nic Groom and Cheslin Kolbe.The celebrities who took part this year included former Bafana Bafana star Matthew Booth, DJ Sox, rapper Jitsvinger, conservationist Braam Malherbe, and Kyla-Rose Smith of Freshlyground. The action was tweeted:@MsKyla_rose kicking off the @RelateBracelets #MandelaDay 2nd Annual Bead Off with Matthew Booth! — Grassroot Soccer SA (@GRSSouthAfrica) July 14, 2015 “I’m just aiming not to stuff up,” @baileyschneider on her goals for the celeb vs. gogo bead off… — Jennifer Sanasie (@JennSanasie) July 14, 2015 The crowd is now cheering on Tata Marshal from the gogos as he makes a final attempt in the #beadoff @relatebracelets @vandawaterfront — Saya Pierce-Jones (@saya_pj) July 14, 2015 Celebs fought hard but the gogos came out on top, reminding us that our elderly are a force to be reckoned with #beadoff @relatebracelets — Saya Pierce-Jones (@saya_pj) July 14, 2015 The online news portal Times Live reported that in the five years since it was founded, Relate Bracelets had raised more than R28-million for a variety of causes. Funds are earmarked for Jane Goodall Institute of South Africa, to rescue chimpanzees; Sorbet, to empower women; Lifestraw, to provide safe drinking water; and United Against Malaria, among others.Relate is a South African not-for-profit social enterprise that creates social investment opportunities to change lives, explains the organisation. “The makers of our bracelets (ranging from the elderly who supplement their pensions, to refugees, to unemployed township youth) earn an income and are, where possible, upskilled to move beyond Relate,” it says.“The retailers – which include Spur and Clicks – who partner to sell our bracelets, benefit from positive brand associations and increased store traffic.”HOW THE INITIATIVE RUNSNeil Robinson, the head of Relate Bracelets, told online financial news portal Business Day Live that the organisation relied on corporates to sell its bracelets. It did not ask for hand-outs. “We decided on a no-donations policy,” Robinson said. “Donation doesn’t help build what we say we are about.“Yes, we donate to causes, but we’d rather you buy bracelets. They give jobs, hope and salaries. I don’t believe in the begging bowl NGO model for us.”Revenue from each R35 bracelet is split three ways: a third goes to the specific charity the bracelet represents, a third is used for operational and materials costs, and a third is split between salaries for the 300 beaders – who are mostly elderly women – remuneration and skills development for other Relate Bracelets staff, as well as for enterprise development.Robinson wants to “franchise” Relate’s operations to Gauteng, Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal, especially because of the job-creation possibilities. “Our gogos in the township (who do the beading) – some have lost sons and daughters. They are looking after seven or eight grandkids and they get R1 500 [in state grants] a month. We double that,” he said.“The hardships they face, we cannot comprehend them. When you look at the opulence in which some people live, that is surely wrong.“My ultimate vision is that every employed South African buys one bracelet a year – each one costs R35. That’s 12 million taxpayers. We could raise a quarter of a billion rand for the causes. It sounds absurd, but those are the numbers.”Relate Bracelets are also sold in the UK and Australia, and anywhere in the world online. Relate Bracelets are sold at retailers like Clicks and Spur, and anywhere in the world online. (Image: YouTube)THE GOALBrand South Africa has said that the spirit of active citizenship and volunteerism is the backbone that will make Nelson Mandela International Day a success and change South Africa for the better.Play your Part for Madiba, its new campaign, is aimed at building a spirit of active citizenship among all South Africans, which is required to drive the implementation of the National Development Plan or Vision 2020.The goal of the month-long initiative is to uphold the ideals, values and actions of Madiba. Madiba was Mandela’s clan name, and the name by which he was fondly known. His legacy encourages South Africans to play their part in the creation of positive change by building their communities and upholding a spirit of ubuntu and social cohesion.PLAY YOUR PARTOn the Mandela Day website, people are encouraged to do things such as volunteering in different sectors, with shelter and infrastructure or awareness building given as examples.For shelter and infrastructure, a volunteer could rebuild a tool shed or paint classrooms and school buildings. For awareness building, a volunteer could identify open manhole covers or drains in an area and report them to the local authorities.Another activity seeking volunteers posted on the site is FoodBank South Africa, which will be holding a hamper packing day at its warehouses in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg.Everyone is invited to enter a team for the meal packaging event and as a team see how many hampers they can pack, and how many lives they can touch in 67 minutes.The site also gives ideas on volunteering. These include:Paint classrooms and school buildings;Organising a cake sale, car wash or garage sale for charity and donating the proceeds;Donating sports equipment to a children’ shelter; and,Taking an elderly person grocery shopping – they will appreciate your company and assistance.Activities in Johannesburg in which volunteers can participate are:last_img read more

Leonard, Raptors to face Antetokounmpo-led Bucks in East final

first_imgLATEST STORIES Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Leonard and the Raptors will have a few hours to enjoy it; the conference final begin Wednesday night in Milwaukee. In its only other conference final appearance, Toronto lost to LeBron James and Cleveland in six games in 2016.The Raptors are well aware of the challenge ahead.Toronto guard Kyle Lowry said the Bucks have been “pretty dominant” in winning eight of nine postseason games — including the past four straight.“They’ve got a lot of weapons and they’re pretty deep,” Lowry said. “They shoot the ball as well as anybody in the NBA and then they’ve got the one-man fast break in Giannis.”The Bucks beat the Raptors three times in four regular-season meetings. Lowry was injured when Toronto won 123-116 at Milwaukee on Jan.5.ADVERTISEMENT “We know we’ve got a tough task at hand,” Lowry said. “We have to prepare for it and get ready to go.”Toronto coach Nick Nurse said the Bucks present challenges his team hasn’t faced in eliminating Orlando and Philadelphia in the first two rounds.“It’s a little different style that we’re going to see,” Nurse said. “We’re going to have to adjust to that really quickly, obviously, and forget about how happy we are pretty quickly because it’s a hungry team. It’s a very deep team, a very good team. We’re going to have to continue to grow and we’re going to have to play better.”Leonard scored 41 points on 16-of-39 shooting in Game 7 against Philadelphia. He topped 30 points five times in the series and averaged 34.7 points overall.Nurse said Leonard has been playing at an “elite level” in the postseason. Toronto center Marc Gasol agrees with his coach.Leonard “can create a shot out of pretty much nothing,” Gasol said. “He’s a mismatch all around.”In Antetokounmpo, the Bucks have a similar matchup nightmare for Toronto.The Raptors will need contributions for everyone, including Lowry — who briefly left Game 7 because of a sprained left thumb but returned and played the entire second half.“I couldn’t really pass the ball and grip the ball, but that doesn’t matter,” Lowry said. “I’m fine.”Milwaukee has been resting since eliminating Boston in Game 5 on Wednesday. Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – MAY 06: Giannis Antetokounmpo #34 of the Milwaukee Bucks looks on during the second quarter of Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals against the Boston Celtics during the 2019 NBA Playoffs at TD Garden on May 06, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. Maddie Meyer/Getty Images/AFPTORONTO — For the second time in four seasons, the Toronto Raptors are headed to the Eastern Conference final.While the Raptors won’t have to deal with playoff nemesis LeBron James this time, they will face a tough task in controlling Milwaukee Bucks All-Star Giannis Antetokounmpo and the rest of the NBA’s highest-scoring offense.ADVERTISEMENT SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Following arrests, Walton gets another chance with Dolphins Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid Duterte wants probe of SEA Games mess Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew MOST READ Of course, Toronto will counter with Kawhi Leonard.He hit the game-winning buzzer-beater Sunday to help Toronto edge Philadelphia 92-90 in Game 7 of its Eastern Conference semifinal series, setting up a showdown between the East’s top teams during the regular season.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsLeonard’s shot bounced around the rim four times before dropping through the basket.“It was great,” Leonard said. “That’s something I never experienced before, Game 7, a game-winning shot. It was a blessing to be able to get to that point and make that shot and feel that moment.” Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Toronto, which used only seven players on Sunday, will not practice Monday, giving players some extra rest.They may need it to derail the surging Bucks.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated View commentslast_img read more

Rohit Sharma moves up to No.5 in ICC Rankings for ODI batsmen

first_imgRohit Sharma moved up two places to No.5 after crossing the 800-point mark for the first time in his career. The stand-in India captain smashed his third ODI double hundred in Mohali against Sri Lanka last week and reached a personal high of 825 points.Rohit had been named captain when India decided to rest Virat Kohli for the limited-overs matches against Sri Lanka. After failing in Dharamsala, Rohit hit back with a sensational 208 not out in Mohali. In the final ODI in Vizag, Rohit was out for 7 but India wrapped up their eighth successive series win.Meanwhile, Shikhar Dhawan, named player of the series, too has gained one slot to reach 14th position after aggregating 168 runs including an unbeaten 100 in Visakhapatnam. Dhawan had slammed 68 in the second match, figuring in a 115-run opening stand with Rohit.Rohit was the only man to score more than one double hundred in ODIs. Four other batsmen – Sachin Tendulkar, Virender Sehwag, Chris Gayle and Martin Guptill – have only one each.On November 13, 2014, Rohit had set a world record for the highest individual score in ODIs with a scintillating 264 at the Eden Gardens against Sri Lanka. He had scored his maiden ODI double hundred against Australia the previous year.Rohit was in fine form in late 2016 before an injury ruled him out of international cricket for seven months. He returned to competitive cricket during the IPL and made 333 runs from 17 matches as Mumbai Indians lifted the trophy for a record third time.Rohit was an automatic choice to partner Shikhar Dhawan in the Champions Trophy and he made an immediate impact with scores of 91, 78, 12 and 123 not out as India stormed to the final. However, he was dismissed for a duck in the title clash against Pakistan.advertisementRested for the bilateral series against West Indies, Rohit returned for the Sri Lanka tour with scores of 54, 124 not out and 104. Against Australia, he carried on from where he left off in Sri Lanka and smashed successive scores of 71, 65 and 125 as India won the series 4-1.Later in the year, Rohit turned his attention on New Zealand and set up India’s victory in Kanpur with a scintillating 147.(With inputs from ICC press release)last_img read more