Allconnect forges strategic partnership with Xcel Energy

ATLANTA, March 4, 2002 — Allconnect, a company that assists consumers in selecting and ordering brand name utility and communications services, has finalized a comprehensive strategic marketing partnership with Xcel Energy to offer a new service called ConnectSmart from Xcel EnergySM, announced Tom Daniel, CEO of Atlanta-based Allconnect.

The agreement enables Allconnect to market a wide array of brand name utilities and communications services to consumers in Xcel Energy’s footprint through both its toll-free customer relations center and web site . Allconnect will also offer HomeSmart from Xcel EnergySM, an appliance warranty program.

“By offering ConnectSmart, Xcel Energy can provide excellent service to customers who are moving to or within our region,” said Doug Jaeger, Vice President of Business Marketing and Sales for Xcel Energy. “Moving is a stressful event, and this partnership allows Xcel Energy to offer customers the convenience of one call to connect all their home services. We look forward to an improved experience for our customers through our relationship with Allconnect.”

“This is a very significant agreement for Allconnect because it will enable us to provide the full array of brand name utilities and communications services throughout Colorado and Minnesota,” commented Daniel.

About Xcel Energy

Xcel Energy is a major U.S. electricity and natural gas company with operations in 12 Western and Midwestern states. Formed by the merger of Denver-based New Century Energies and Minneapolis-based Northern States Power Co., Xcel Energy provides a comprehensive portfolio of energy-related products and services to 3.2 million electricity customers and 1.7 million natural gas customers through its regulated operating companies. In terms of customers, it is the fourth-largest combination natural gas and electricity company in the nation. Company headquarters are located in Minneapolis. More information is available at .

About Allconnect

Founded in 1998, Allconnect provides a free and simple service that helps customers select and order home utility and communications services from brands they know and trust. Allconnect uses a sophisticated decision support system, which is accessible via its toll-free phone number 1-800-255-2666 (1-800-ALLCONNECT) or Web site , to identify the best service providers, service plans and technologies for its customers based on individual usage patterns and preferences. Allconnect then initiates service for the customer by transmitting orders to selected service providers and will act as the single point of contact for the customer until the new services are connected and running smoothly.

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