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SEMCO ENERGY Issues Common Equity and Affirms Earnings Guidance

FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich., Aug. 22 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SEMCO ENERGY, Inc. (NYSE: SEN) today announced that the Company issued approximately 8.7 million shares of common stock for $101 million on August 18, 2003 through the mandatory purchase obligation specified under its Feline Prides. This action further enhances the common equity base of the Company. Related to this issuance, the Company retired approximately $101 million of 9% Trust Preferred Securities.

"This additional common equity, together with the Dividend change announced in June 2003, will strengthen the Company's financial position," said Marcus Jackson, Chairman, President and CEO. "The Company reduced its annual Dividend rate in June from $.50 to $.30 in light of internal cash requirements to fund utility growth and to reflect the long-term earnings prospects of the Company. We believe this new rate is not only appropriate but also will give us a payout ratio more in line with our peers."

"While the construction services industry, as well as SEMCO's construction division are not performing as expected, the Company anticipates cash flow generated by this business segment to be positive in 2003. Our gas distribution businesses in Michigan and Alaska continue to perform as expected. Based on normal weather in Michigan and Alaska from now through year-end, including the 8.7 million common shares and excluding one-time debt extinguishment costs, earnings per share are still expected to be between $.30 and $.35 for 2003," Jackson added.

SEMCO ENERGY, Inc. is a diversified energy and infrastructure company that distributes natural gas to approximately 385,000 customers in Michigan and Alaska. It also owns and operates businesses involved in natural gas pipeline construction services, propane distribution and intrastate pipelines and natural gas storage in various regions of the United States. In addition, it provides information technology and outsourcing services, specializing in the mid-range computer market.

The following is a "Safe-Harbor" statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. This release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Statements that are not historic facts, including statements about the Company's outlook, beliefs, plans, goals and expectations, are forward-looking statements. Factors that may impact forward-looking statement include, but are not limited to, the effects of weather, the economic climate, competition, commodity prices, changing conditions in the capital markets, regulatory approval processes, success in obtaining new business and other risks detailed from time to time in the company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

SOURCE SEMCO ENERGY, Inc.

"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding SEMCO Energy's business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report or Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.

 
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