UtiliCorp on schedule to complete Midlands Electricity acquisition

KANSAS CITY, Mo., March 11, 2002 — UtiliCorp United is on schedule to complete its previously announced acquisition of Midlands Electricity, a UtiliCorp official said.

“We are currently working to modify our agreement with FirstEnergy to allow us to complete the transaction in a manner consistent with the requirements of our regulators, which include, among other things, that we have a financial partner,” said Dan Streek, chief financial officer of UtiliCorp. “We expect the transaction to close in the next 30 days.”

Streek issued the statement in response to a recent article in the London Financial Times concerning the company’s previously announced agreement to acquire Midlands Electricity from FirstEnergy Corp.

Midlands Electricity is the fourth-largest regional electricity company in the United Kingdom, serves 2.3 million network customers, and owns a 38,000-mile electric distribution network and investments in other generating assets and energy businesses.

Based in Kansas City, Missouri, UtiliCorp is a multinational energy company with more than four million customers worldwide. It has been active in the United Kingdom for the past decade through its subsidiary Aquila, Inc., a major presence in energy trading and risk management. UtiliCorp also operates in the United States, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. More information is available at www.utilicorp.com.

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