The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund

The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund

November 08, 2007 09:06 ET

The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund and The Consumers' Waterheater Operating Trust Announce That DBRS Will Review New Billing Arrangements

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 8, 2007) -


The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund (the "Fund") (TSX:CWI.UN) announced that DBRS has placed the STA-2 (middle) stability rating for the Fund and the AAA rating for both series of senior unsecured notes of The Consumers' Waterheater Operating Trust "Under Review with Developing Implications." This action is part the Fund's transition to Enbridge Gas Distribution Inc.'s ("EGD") Open Bill Access program.

The Fund received notice from EGD regarding the termination of the existing trust arrangements relating to the Fund's billing and collecting activities that are undertaken on the EGD bill, effective January 1, 2008, as detailed in the Fund's news release dated November 5, 2007. DBRS stated in its ratings announcement that it believes it is likely that new trust arrangements will be implemented with structural protections similar to the existing trust arrangements and that DBRS would anticipate confirming the ratings with stable trends if that occurs.

"The review was not precipitated by any change in the Fund's operating performance or underlying asset quality, both of which continue to remain strong," said John Macdonald, President and Chief Executive Officer. "The Fund and EGD expect to implement a replacement trust arrangement based on our memorandum of understanding ("MOU")."

EGD stated in its notice that it is EGD's intention and expectation to implement the arrangements set forth in the MOU, including the replacement trust arrangements, promptly so as to be operationally effective by January 1, 2008.

"Overall, the new billing arrangements are favourable to the Fund," said Mr. Macdonald. "We continue our work with EGD to implement the new billing and trust arrangements with a view to maintaining the structural protections that the Fund's arrangements with EGD currently have, while taking advantage of the benefits that the Open Bill Access program provides us."

About The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund

The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund owns a portfolio of over 1.4 million installed water heaters and other assets, leased primarily to residential customers in Ontario. The asset base has been generating stable and growing cash flows since its inception in the late 1950s.

Additional information regarding The Consumers' Waterheater Income Fund, including its current Annual Information Form is available on SEDAR at

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