DUKE ENERGY TO REPURCHASE 30 MILLION SHARES OF COMMON STOCK IN ACCELERATED SHARE ACQUISITION PLAN
Last month, Duke Energy’s board of directors approved a broader plan to repurchase up to $2.5 billion in common stock periodically over the next three years. In addition to the 30 million shares, the company may repurchase additional shares of its common stock in 2005 based on market conditions.
“We are moving quickly to implement the share repurchase plan announced last month,” said Group Vice President and Chief Financial Officer David Hauser. “By redeploying available cash to retire 30 million shares at the beginning of the program, we are creating immediate value for our investors.”
The accelerated share acquisition plan is expected to close on Wednesday, March 23, 2005, at an initial price per share of $27.46 based on Friday’s New York Stock Exchange closing price. Under the terms of the plan, Duke Energy will repurchase all 30 million shares immediately from Merrill Lynch, with Merrill Lynch then purchasing an equivalent amount of shares in the open market. These purchases will likely take place over several months.
The repurchased shares are subject to a future contingent-purchase price adjustment based on the prices actually paid by Merrill Lynch for the shares during the repurchase period.
Duke Energy is a diversified energy company with a portfolio of natural gas and electric businesses, both regulated and unregulated, and an affiliated real estate company. Duke Energy supplies, delivers and processes energy for customers in the
This release includes statements that do not directly or exclusively relate to historical facts. Such statements are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Those statements represent Duke Energy’s intentions, plans, expectations, assumptions and beliefs about future events and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors. Many of those factors are outside Duke Energy’s control and could cause actual results to differ materially from the results expressed or implied by those forward-looking statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include: state, federal and foreign legislative and regulatory initiatives that affect cost and investment recovery, have an impact on rate structures, and affect the speed at and degree to which competition enters the electric and natural gas industries; the outcomes of litigation and regulatory investigations, proceedings or inquiries; industrial, commercial and residential growth in Duke Energy’s service territories; the weather and other natural phenomena; the timing and extent of changes in commodity prices, interest rates and foreign currency exchange rates; general economic conditions, including any potential effects arising from terrorist attacks and any consequential hostilities or other hostilities; changes in environmental and other laws and regulations to which Duke Energy and its subsidiaries are subject or other external factors over which Duke Energy has no control; the results of financing efforts, including Duke Energy’s ability to obtain financing on favorable terms, which can be affected by various factors including Duke Energy’s credit ratings and general economic conditions; lack of improvement or declines in the market prices of equity securities and resultant cash funding requirements for Duke Energy’s defined benefit pension plans; the level of creditworthiness of counterparties to Duke Energy’s transactions; the amount of collateral required to be posted from time to time in Duke Energy’s transactions; growth in opportunities for Duke Energy’s business units, including the timing and success of efforts to develop domestic and international power, pipeline, gathering, liquefied natural gas, processing and other infrastructure projects; the performance of electric generation, pipeline and gas processing facilities; the extent of success in connecting natural gas supplies to gathering and processing systems and in connecting and expanding gas and electric markets; the effect of accounting pronouncements issued periodically by accounting standard-setting bodies; and conditions of the capital markets and equity markets during the periods covered by the forward-looking statements.
In light of these risks, uncertainties and assumptions, the events described in the forward-looking statements might not occur or might occur to a different extent or at a different time than Duke Energy has described. Duke Energy undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.