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RBC Acquires The Athena Energy Group To Expand Existing Commodities Business Into Quebec

Announces new name of RBC Natural Gas Services Inc.

TORONTO, April 3, 2013 /CNW/ - Royal Bank of Canada (TSX: RY) (NYSE: RY) today announced that it has acquired the Athena Energy Group, a market leading natural gas supplier in Quebec. The acquisition expands RBC Capital Markets' existing business, which offers structured pricing for natural gas supply, from Ontario into Quebec.

Terms were not disclosed.

"RBC is the leading Canadian bank offering structured contracts for natural gas supply directly to commercial clients, helping them manage their exposure to changes in energy prices. This acquisition builds on our existing presence in the market and positions us well for the future," said Bruce Macdonald, Head of Commodities & Electronic Trading at RBC Capital Markets. "Athena has longstanding relationships with more than 400 commercial and institutional clients in Quebec, and its team will be able to leverage the strength in commodities and risk management of RBC to provide additional value to its clients."

RBC Capital Markets' Commodities group provides leading international sales and trading capabilities across a variety of commodity markets (oil and gas, metals, agriculture, electricity and carbon emissions) in North America and Europe.

"The Athena team is excited about the opportunity to join RBC. As part of RBC Natural Gas Services Inc., we will have even better tools to continue to provide outstanding service to our customers and further grow our business," said Robert Bédard, principal co-founder, Athena Energy Group and vice-president and co-head of commercial energy, RBC Capital Markets.

The Athena Energy Group was a privately-held business headquartered in St. Leonard, Quebec, consisting of two sister companies, Athena Energy Marketing Inc. and Athena Energy Services Inc. Effective immediately, the Quebec natural gas structured contracts business is renamed and will operate as RBC Natural Gas Services Inc.

About RBC Capital Markets RBC Capital Markets is the corporate and investment banking arm of the Royal Bank of Canada, the fifth largest bank in North America by market capitalization. RBC Capital Markets is a premier investment bank that provides a focused set of products, services and expertise to corporations, institutional investors and governments around the world. With over 6,500 professionals in 15 countries, we deliver our products and services to clients in over 100 countries through operations across North America, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region. For more information, please visit www.rbccm.com.

About RBC Royal Bank of Canada (RY on TSX and NYSE) and its subsidiaries operate under the master brand name RBC. We are Canada's largest bank as measured by assets and market capitalization, and are among the largest banks in the world, based on market capitalization. We are one of North America's leading diversified financial services companies, and provide personal and commercial banking, wealth management services, insurance, and investor services and wholesale banking on a global basis. We employ approximately 80,000 full- and part-time employees who serve more than 15 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 49 other countries. For more information, please visit rbc.com.

RBC supports a broad range of community initiatives through donations, sponsorships and employee volunteer activities. In 2012, we contributed more than $95 million to causes worldwide, including donations and community investments of more than $64 million and $31 million in sponsorships.

Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements 

From time to time, we make written or oral forward-looking statements within the meaning of certain securities laws, including the "safe harbour" provisions of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and any applicable Canadian securities legislation. We may make forward-looking statements in this press release, in filings with Canadian regulators or the SEC, in reports to shareholders and in other communications. Forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, statements relating to the expected impact of the acquisition of Athena Energy Group by Royal Bank of Canada. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words such as "believe", "expect", "foresee", "forecast", "anticipate", "intend", "estimate", "goal", "plan" and "project" and similar expressions of future or conditional verbs such as "will", "may", "should", "could" or "would".

By their very nature, forward-looking statements require us to make assumptions and are subject to inherent risks and uncertainties, which give rise to the possibility that our predictions, forecasts, projections, expectations or conclusions and other forward-looking information, including statements about the expected impact of the acquisition of Athena Energy Group by Royal Bank of Canada, will not prove to be accurate and will not be achieved. We caution readers not to place undue reliance on these statements as a number of risk factors could cause our actual results to differ materially from the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements. These factors - many of which are beyond our control and the effects of which can be difficult to predict - include, but are not limited to: the impact of changes in the laws and regulations regulating financial services and enforcement thereof; general business and economic market conditions in Canada, the United States and certain other countries in which Royal Bank of Canada or Athena Energy Group operate; the effects of competition in the markets in which Royal Bank of Canada and Athena Energy Group operate; judicial or regulatory judgments and legal proceedings; the ability of Royal Bank of Canada to complete the integration of Athena Energy Group's business successfully; and other factors that may affect future results of Royal Bank of Canada and RBC Capital Markets' Commodities business, including timely development and introduction of new products and services, and the ability of Royal Bank of Canada to build on its existing presence in the market.

We caution that the foregoing list of risk factors is not exhaustive. When relying on our forward-looking statements to make decisions with respect to us, investors and others should carefully consider the foregoing factors and other uncertainties and potential events. Material economic assumptions underlying the forward looking-statements contained in this press release are set out in the Overview and outlook section and for each business segment under the heading Outlook and priorities in our 2012 Annual Report, as updated by the Overview section in our Q1 2013 Report to Shareholders. Except as required by law, we do not undertake to update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time by us or on our behalf.

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