Jan 4, 2001
PPL Corp. (NYSE: PPL) said Thursday afternoon (1/4) that even if it is unable to collect the amount it is owed for energy sales to California, the company expects to exceed the Wall Street consensus earnings estimate of $3.03 per share for 2000.
PPL said that its receivables from the California Independent System Operator are about $17 million. Concern regarding the credit quality of California's investor-owned utilities may have created uncertainty as to PPL's ability to collect these receivables.
"As we have been saying, we are a relatively small supplier in the California market," said John R. Biggar, PPL executive vice president and chief financial officer. "In addition, our earnings forecasts are based on conservative assumptions, so even with this $17 million exposure, we expect to exceed our earnings target for 2000. We expect to see continued strong growth in earnings for 2001 and 2002."
PPL is capable of providing electricity to the California market from its PPL Montana power plants. While much of the generating capacity at PPL Montana is dedicated to supplying customers in Montana, the company sells excess electricity into the Western Systems Coordinating Council and, in small measure, to California.
Consistent with PPL's comprehensive risk management program, the company is now selling to California only when ordered to do so by the Department of Energy.
PPL Corp., headquartered in Allentown, Pa., generates electricity at power plants in Pennsylvania, Maine and Montana; markets wholesale or retail energy in 42 U.S. states and Canada; and delivers electricity to nearly 6 million customers in Pennsylvania, in the United Kingdom and in Latin America.
Certain statements contained in this news release, including statements with respect to future earnings, are "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the federal securities laws. Although PPL Corp. believes that the expectations and assumptions reflected in these forward-looking statements are reasonable, these statements involve a number of risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially from the results discussed in the statements. The following are among the important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward-looking statements: market demand and prices for energy, capacity and fuel; weather variations affecting customer energy usage; competition in retail and wholesale power markets; the effect of any business or industry restructuring; the profitability and liquidity of PPL Corp. and its subsidiaries; new accounting requirements or new interpretations or applications of existing requirements; operating performance of plants and other facilities; environmental conditions and requirements; system conditions and operating costs; development of new projects, markets and technologies; performance of new ventures; political, regulatory or economic conditions in countries where PPL Corp. or its subsidiaries conduct business; receipt of necessary governmental approvals; capital market conditions; foreign exchange rates; and the commitments and liabilities of PPL Corp. and its subsidiaries. Any such forward-looking statements should be considered in light of such factors and in conjunction with PPL Corp.'s Form 10-K and other reports on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
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SOURCE: PPL Corporation
Contact: Dan McCarthy for Media, 610-774-5758, or Tim Paukovits for
Financial Community, 610-774-4124, both of PPL, or fax, 610-774-5281