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Diverse Supplier Roundtable Hosted by Pepco and Exelon Draws More Than 160 Small Businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. and CHICAGO (Feb. 1, 2016) - Minority and women-owned businesses in the District will benefit from new and expanded opportunities with the proposed Pepco-Exelon merger, leaders of both companies told an audience of more than 160 local business leaders recently.

One local company in the audience, Ideal Electrical Supply Corp., has been working with Pepco for nearly 30 years. Ideal - a women and minority-owned business - did about $20 million in business with Pepco last year, up from $3.5 million several years ago.

"We're excited about the possibilities this merger opens for us and look forward to it moving forward," said Ideal President and Co-founder Cora Williams.

"The combined resources of Pepco and Exelon and their commitment to invest locally will be beneficial to local and diverse contractors and the communities we serve," Pepco Region President Donna Cooper said, adding: "We're supportive of every effort to drive jobs and economic development in the District and our merger with Exelon will continue that support."

The remarks came during a roundtable and networking session at the Hamilton Live for contractors in the Washington, D.C., area. A wide variety of small business owners attended the event for a detailed question and answer period with key officials at Pepco Holdings and Exelon and to make connections with other small business owners.

Pepco Holdings and Exelon executives provided specifics on company contracting levels that are likely to expand if the merger is approved and how local businesses will be able to work with the companies.

Melissa Sherrod, vice president of corporate affairs at Exelon, explained how Exelon spent more than $1.3 billion in 2015 with diverse vendors, including small, minority-owned or women-owned businesses.

"A successful merger means there will be even more possibilities for diverse businesses that we want to support, and that's a good thing for the health of the communities Pepco serves," Sherrod said. "Exelon shares Pepco's core value of diversity and intends to build on it going forward."

The merger will bring together Exelon's three electric and gas utilities - BGE, ComEd and PECO - and Pepco Holdings' three electric and gas utilities - Atlantic City Electric, Delmarva Power and Pepco - to create the leading mid-Atlantic electric and gas utility.

The merger has been approved in Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and Virginia and by federal regulators. The D.C. Public Service Commission is currently reviewing the merger and has set a schedule which would allow for completing the proceeding by the first quarter of 2016.     

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