Release details

2017-05-09 23:00 CEST
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Westar Energy Announces 1st Quarter 2017 Results.

TOPEKA, Kan., May 9, 2017 - Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE:WR) today announced earnings of $60 million, or $0.42 per share, for the first quarter 2017 compared with earnings of $66 million, or $0.46 per share, for the first quarter 2016.
Lower net income for the quarter, compared with last year, was driven by the effect of mild weather resulting in lower residential and commercial sales. Also contributing to the lower net income was a decrease in corporate-owned life insurance income, higher depreciation expense due in part to the start of operations of our Western Plains Wind Farm, and higher distribution expense from taking advantage of the warmer winter weather to execute our vegetation management strategy earlier in the year.

Additional Information
Because of the pending transaction with Great Plains Energy, Westar Energy will no longer host a quarterly webcast and conference call. Investors may continue to contact our Investor Relations Department at (785) 575-8227.
This earnings announcement, a package of detailed first-quarter financial information, the company's quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the period ended Mar. 31, 2017, and other filings the company has made with the Securities and Exchange Commission are available on the company's website at www.WestarEnergy.com.
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As Kansas' largest electric utility, Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE:WR) provides customers the safe, reliable electricity needed to power their businesses and homes. We have 7,800 MW of electric generation capacity that includes renewables and traditional power sources with half the electricity supplied to our more than 700,000 customers from emissions free sources: nuclear, wind and solar, with a third coming from renewables. We are a leader in electric transmission in Kansas coordinating a network of lines and substations that supports one of the largest consolidations of wind energy in the nation. Our employees live, volunteer and work in the communities we serve..
For more information about Westar Energy, visit us on the Internet at http://www.WestarEnergy.com.
Forward-looking statements: Certain matters discussed in this news release are "forward-looking statements." The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 has established that these statements qualify for safe harbors from liability. Forward-looking statements may include words like "believe," "anticipate," "target," "expect," "pro forma," "estimate," "intend," "guidance" or words of similar meaning. Forward-looking statements describe future plans, objectives, expectations or goals. Although Westar Energy believes that its expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, all forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty. The factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements include those discussed herein as well as (1) those discussed in the company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2016 (a) under the heading, "Forward-Looking Statements," (b) in ITEM 1. Business, (c) in ITEM 1A. Risk Factors, (d) in ITEM 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations, and (e) in ITEM 8. Financial Statements and Supplementary Data: Notes 3, 14 and 16; (2) those discussed in the company's Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed May 9, 2017, (a) under the heading, "Forward-Looking Statements," (b) in ITEM 2. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations and (c) in Part I, Financial Information, ITEM 1. Financial Statements: Notes 3, 11 and 12 and (d) in ITEM 1A. Risk Factors; and (3) other factors discussed in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date such statement was made, and the company does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statement was made.

Media Contact:
Gina Penzig
Media Relations Manager
Phone: 785-575-8089
Gina.Penzig@westarenergy.com
Media line: 888-613-0003

Investor Contact:
Cody VandeVelde
Director, Investor Relations
Phone: 785-575-8227
Cody.VandeVelde@westarenergy.com

Westar Energy, Inc.
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income
(Unaudited)

  Three Months Ended Mar. 31,
  2017   2016   Change   % Change
  (Dollars In Thousands, Except Per Share Amounts)
REVENUES:              
Residential  $ 176,169     $ 179,290     $ (3,121 )   (1.7 )
Commercial  155,707     165,673     (9,966 )   (6.0 )
Industrial  98,516     100,697     (2,181 )   (2.2 )
Other retail  (12,349 )   (14,381 )   2,032     14.1  
Total Retail Revenues  418,043     431,279     (13,236 )   (3.1 )
Wholesale  77,367     67,412     9,955     14.8  
Transmission  69,441     63,915     5,526     8.6  
Other  7,723     6,844     879     12.8  
Total Revenues  572,574     569,450     3,124     0.5  
OPERATING EXPENSES:              
Fuel and purchased power 113,855     100,058     13,797     13.8  
SPP network transmission costs  60,674     60,760     (86 )   (0.1 )
Operating and maintenance  81,198     77,757     3,441     4.4  
Depreciation and amortization  88,625     83,640     4,985     6.0  
Selling, general and administrative 59,157     56,456     2,701     4.8  
Taxes other than income tax  42,716     48,968     (6,252 )   (12.8 )
Total Operating Expenses  446,225     427,639     18,586     4.3  
INCOME FROM OPERATIONS  126,349     141,811     (15,462 )   (10.9 )
OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE):              
Investment earnings  3,155     2,016     1,139     56.5  
Other income  1,300     9,477     (8,177 )   (86.3 )
Other expense  (5,316 )   (5,543 )   227     4.1  
Total Other (Expense) Income  (861 )   5,950     (6,811 )   (114.5 )
Interest expense  41,095     40,431     664     1.6  
INCOME BEFORE INCOME TAXES  84,393     107,330     (22,937 )   (21.4 )
Income tax expense  20,911     38,622     (17,711 )   (45.9 )
NET INCOME  63,482     68,708     (5,226 )   (7.6 )
Less: Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests 3,821     3,123     698     22.4  
NET INCOME ATTRIBUTABLE TO COMMON STOCK  $ 59,661     $ 65,585     $ (5,924 )   (9.0 )
BASIC AND DILUTED EARNINGS PER AVERAGE COMMON SHARE OUTSTANDING ATTRIBUTABLE TO WESTAR ENERGY, INC. (See 10-Q Note 2):              
Basic earnings per common share  $ 0.42     $ 0.46     $ (0.04 )   (8.7 )
Diluted earnings per common share $ 0.42     $ 0.46     $ (0.04 )   (8.7 )
AVERAGE EQUIVALENT COMMON SHARES OUTSTANDING (in thousands):              
Basic  142,437     141,993     444     0.3  
Diluted  142,696     142,311     385     0.3  
DIVIDENDS DECLARED PER COMMON SHARE  $ 0.40     $ 0.38     $ 0.02     5.3  
Effective income tax rate  25 %   36 %        
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