MDU Resources acquires Cincinnati-based E.S.I. Inc.

BISMARCK, N.D., Oct. 1, 2002 — MDU Resources Group Inc. announces the acquisition of E.S.I., Inc. (ESI), a union electrical contractor based in Cincinnati, Ohio. ESI specializes in inside electrical services, low voltage building systems and electrical repair and maintenance services.

ESI will become part of Utility Services, Inc. (USI), a wholly owned operating subsidiary of MDU Resources. ESI annual revenues average approximately $17 million. Earnings from the ESI acquisition are expected to be accretive to current year MDU Resources earnings per share. Financial details of the cash transaction were not released.

“The acquisition of ESI strengthens the diversification of the services we offer in the central region of the United States,” said Ron Tipton, chief executive officer of USI. “With a 36-year history of exemplary customer service, excellent labor relations and market share expansion, ESI will make an outstanding addition to the USI family of companies.”

Founded in 1966, ESI operates in 13 counties in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana. Greater Cincinnati is the nation’s 24th most populous metropolitan area. ESI’s customers include institutional, industrial and commercial facilities that benefit from ESI’s expertise with universities, hospitals, correctional facilities and sewer and water treatment plants.

MDU Resources Group, Inc. provides energy, value-added natural resource products and related services that are essential to our country’s energy, transportation and communication infrastructure. MDU Resources includes electric and natural gas utilities, a natural gas pipeline, utility services, natural gas and oil production, construction materials and mining, and energy services. For more information about MDU Resources, see the company’s Web site at www.mdu.com or contact the investor relations department at investor@mduresources.com.

Source: MDU Resources Group, Inc.

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