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Great Plains to buy Westar Energy for $8.6 billion

Staff writer |
Great Plains Energy, the parent of regulated power utility Kansas City Power & Light, will buy Westar Energy for $8.6 billion in cash and stock.

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Westar shareholders will receive a total of $60 per share, representing a premium of 13.4 percent to the stock's Friday close.

The deal comes at a time when U.S. utilities are struggling with falling demand for electricity in both open and regulated markets due to increased energy efficiency and a weak economy.

The enterprise value of the deal is about $12.2 billion, including about $3.6 billion in Westar's debt, the companies said on Tuesday.

The transaction will increase Great Plains Energy's customer base to more than 1.5 million in Kansas and Missouri, with nearly 13,000 megawatts of generation capacity.

Great Plains Energy has secured about $8 billion of committed debt financing from Goldman Sachs.

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