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Exelon meets merger agreement's donation requirement

Exelon Corp. has donated over $300,000 to Maryland responders and provided a number of free and discounted services for homeowners this year, successfully complying with the terms of its 2012 acquisition agreement with the Maryland-based Constellation Energy Group. According to an official with United Way of Central Maryland, Exelon has been faithful and exceptional in fulfilling its volunteer commitments.

The state Public Service Commission required Exelon to make ongoing charitable investments in Maryland in the sales terms of the company's deal with Constellation. The Commission aimed to help assuage state officials who expressed concerns that the merger might hurt Maryland. Many of those who expressed concerns eventually supported the deal, however, some were still unsatisfied with the amount of Exelon's contributions, explaining that they still hoped to see them grow over time.

Exelon pledged to continue donating services and money to charities and individuals across Maryland at the same level Constellation had been giving in recent years; the company said it would contribute approximately $7 million each year for at least 10 years. Thus far, the contributions come in the form of cash donations, subsidized energy--efficient homes for low--income Maryland citizens, and free trees to former Constellation customers. A Baltimore community group initially called for $10 million in annual donations.

A number of nonprofits and other commentators remain worried about the loss of Constellation's headquarters; it was Baltimore's only Fortune 500 company. A director with the John Hopkins Center for Civil Society Studies explained that areas with high amounts of corporate diving are usually places where many headquarters locations exist. He added that even if Exelon gives as much or more than Constellation, Baltimore could lose crucial influence with the company's leadership.

Business acquisitions often come with a lot of caveats. It takes skilled attorneys from both parties to work out a deal that is fair and equitable, sometimes not just for the parties involved, but for all people, businesses or locations that will be affected. Once a final contract is made, it is important that all future requirements are met and adhered to.

Source: Baltimore Sun, "Exelon donations in Maryland made as agreed," April 12, 2013, Jamie Smith Hopkins

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