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Industry News

UK's International Power Eyes Enron Assets

LCG, Nov. 16, 2001--International Power of the UK, on the strength of good third quarter results which were buoyed by revenues from its U.S. power plants, was said to be eyeing the generation assets of Enron Corp.

The Evening Standard, a British newspaper, said yesterday that International Power, which was created by the split-up of National Power, could make a rival bid for Portland General Electric Co. of Oregon, because it already has a power project in the Portland, Ore., area.

Utility holding company Sierra Pacific Resources Corp., owner of two Nevada electric companies, has been negotiating since summer to acquire PGE from Enron.

The paper also said International Power could pursue acquisition of Enron's big Teesside plant in England, which it said could be had for around $800 million. International Power recently reentered the UK generation business with its acquisition of the Rugeley power station.

Enron also has 4,500 megawatts of assets in Europe which the paper feels International Power could pursue. These include plants in Italy where the British company is developing greenfield plants and has been linked with a deal to buy a large portfolio of assets from Enel.

The Evening Standard noted that five new natural gas-fueled power plants International Power brought on-line in the U.S. this year helped the company boost its underlying profits before interest and tax by 46 percent to $240 million in the first nine month.

Strong cash flow also enabled International Power to reduce net debt by 13 percent to $927 million, the paper said, giving it financial wiggle room to go after Enron's generation assets.

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