Azurix North America Takes North Brunswick, Wildwood NJ Facilities from U.S. Water

Updated 11:20 AM ET June 20, 2000

Rebecca Mark, CEO Azurix HOUSTON, June 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Azurix Corp. announced today that its wholly-owned subsidiary, Azurix North America, has been selected to negotiate agreements to provide water and wastewater services to three more communities in the United States.

The operations and maintenance contracts for communities in Louisiana and New Jersey are valued in excess of $130 million. These contracts would commence following completion of the definitive agreements with the municipalities.

"We are beginning to see the results of our efforts to expand the service business in North America," said Rebecca Mark, chairman and CEO of Azurix. "We are very gratified that our efforts to earn the confidence of these new clients is proving successful. It demonstrates our ability to meet the specific needs of municipal clients in a cost effective and creative way."

The Council of Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, voted last week to award a $10 million five-year contract to Azurix North America to operate and maintain its East Bank Wastewater Treatment Plant. The contract has two five-year options for renewal giving it a potential value of up to $30 million. A competing bidder held the previous five-year contract.

"We are particularly pleased to be selected for this job because it is so rare to be able to unseat an incumbent service provider. It was a tough battle and we are happy to be the winner, but the real winners are the citizens of Jefferson Parish," said John Stokes, president and CEO of Azurix North America.

The Middlesex County Improvement Authority of Middlesex, N.J., also voted last week to commence negotiations on a 20-year contract with Azurix North America to operate and maintain water treatment and distribution systems for the city of New Brunswick and the town of North Brunswick. Azurix teamed with local contractor JJS Services for the contract, valued at more than $120 million.

"New Brunswick and North Brunswick have shown a great deal of creativity by teaming up to award a shared services contract," Stokes said. "Because of economies of scale, each municipality will reap greater savings than they could have achieved individually."

These latest contracts come on the heels of successful contract awards in Wildwood, N.J., Fountain Lakes and Pine Lakes, Fla., Sunbelt Municipal Utility District, Tex., and Mitchell, Ont. Azurix North America also holds operating contracts for water and wastewater facilities in Seattle, Wash., Hamilton- Wentworth, Ont., Glynn County, Ga., and other locations throughout the United States and Canada.

"We have dedicated a lot of effort to expand our residuals management business over the last year, and now the operations and maintenance business is following suit," Stokes added. "Over the next year, we expect to see the engineering and underground infrastructure rehabilitation businesses come on strong as well."

Azurix North America provides a full range of water and wastewater services, including operations and maintenance, engineering, carbon regeneration, underground infrastructure rehabilitation and biosolids management, to more than 700 municipal, industrial and privately-owned facilities throughout North America.

Azurix Corp. is a global company that owns, operates and manages water and wastewater assets, provides water and wastewater related services, and develops and manages water resources. The company offers e-business solutions in the areas of procurement, engineering and design, water supply and storage and billing and collections. The company's stock is traded on the NYSE under the ticker symbol, "AZX".

This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Although Azurix believes that its expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, it can give no assurance that these expectations will prove to be correct. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the expectations reflected in the forward-looking statements include, among other things: the ability to enter new water and wastewater markets in the United States and in other countries; the timing and extent of deregulation of water and wastewater markets in the United States and in other countries; regulatory developments in the United States and in other countries, including environmental and tax legislation and regulations; the timing and extent of efforts by governments to privatize water and wastewater industries; the extent of success in securing new service contracts, acquiring water and wastewater assets and developing and managing water resources, including the ability to qualify for and win bids for water and wastewater projects and contracts; the ability to access the debt and equity markets during the periods covered by the forward-looking statements, which will depend on general market conditions and our credit ratings for our debt obligations; and other factors identified in Azurix's reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.