NiSource outlines enhanced long-term growth and infrastructure investment plans at 2012 Investor Day $25 billion-plus investment inventory drives increased earnings, dividend growth outlook

MERRILLVILLE, Ind., Sept. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- NiSource Inc. (NYSE: NI) executives today outlined an enhanced long-term growth strategy, centered around an inventory of more than $25 billion in infrastructure modernization and growth investment opportunities spanning the company's natural gas and electric operations.

At NiSource's 2012 Investor Day meeting in New York, President and Chief Executive Officer Robert C. Skaggs Jr. and other senior executives detailed the company's plans to leverage its broad array of growth and infrastructure modernization investment opportunities to meet customer needs, strengthen earnings and build shareholder value. Taken together, these opportunities are expected to result in capital investments totaling $1.5 to $1.8 billion per year, generating operating earnings growth (non-GAAP) of approximately 5 to 7 percent per year, and annual common stock dividend growth in the range of 3 to 5 percent.

"NiSource has a well-defined and substantial inventory of accretive infrastructure investment and growth opportunities spanning each of our core business units," Skaggs noted. "This broad array of opportunities, combined with our strong track record of disciplined financial management and project execution, has enabled us to enhance our annual capital investment, earnings and dividend growth outlook. This enhanced plan will enable us to meet our core financial commitments – including our commitment to maintaining investment-grade credit ratings – while providing significant benefits for our customers, and added value for our shareholders."

At the meeting, NiSource leaders outlined key growth strategies and more than $25 billion in investment opportunities spanning the next 20-plus years across each of the company's major business units, including:

  • Approximately $8-10 billion in Gas Transmission and Storage infrastructure investment opportunities, including NiSource's recently announced long-term interstate pipeline modernization program, as well as market growth, midstream and minerals projects leveraging the company's strong asset base in the Utica and Marcellus Shale production areas.

 

  • Approximately $10 billion in Gas Distribution infrastructure investments, with most centered in the company's well-established infrastructure programs to modernize its gas distribution systems, in tandem with development of new customer programs and regulatory initiatives.

 

  • Approximately $6-8 billion in investments in Electric operations, including environmental enhancements, electric transmission and distribution system improvements, and generation facility upgrades.

"In support of these investments, NiSource remains focused on pursuing complementary stakeholder-focused customer and regulatory programs designed to improve customer services, reduce energy usage and save money," Skaggs noted.

2012 Guidance Reaffirmed
At today's meeting, NiSource also affirmed that it remains on track to deliver net operating earnings in line with its full-year outlook for 2012, which is $1.40 to $1.50 per share (non-GAAP*).  

The presentation from today's Investor Day is available in the Investor section of nisource.com (http://ir.nisource.com/events.cfm).  A full replay of the Investor Day will be available on nisource.com starting on Sept. 13, 2012.

About NiSource
NiSource Inc., based in Merrillville, Ind., is a Fortune 500 company engaged in natural gas transmission, storage and distribution, as well as electric generation, transmission and distribution. NiSource operating companies deliver energy to 3.8 million customers located within the high-demand energy corridor stretching from the Gulf Coast through the Midwest to New England.  Information about NiSource and its subsidiaries is available via the Internet at www.nisource.com. NI-F

Caution Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of federal securities laws. These forward-looking statements are subject to various risks and uncertainties. Examples of forward-looking statements include statements and expectations regarding future dividends, operating earnings growth, earnings per share growth, capital investments, financing needs and plans, and investment opportunities.  Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the projections, forecasts, estimates and expectations discussed in these presentations include, among other things, weather; fluctuations in supply and demand for energy commodities; growth opportunities for NiSource's businesses; increased competition in deregulated energy markets; the success of regulatory and commercial initiatives; dealings with third parties over whom NiSource has no control; actual operating experience of NiSource's assets; the regulatory process; regulatory and legislative changes; changes in general economic, capital and commodity market conditions; and counter-party credit risk, and the matters set forth in the "Risk Factors" section in NiSource's 2011 Form 10-K (which section is incorporated herein by reference) and in conjunction with other SEC reports filed by NiSource, many of which are beyond the control of NiSource.  Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this presentation. Future earnings are illustrative only and do not constitute guidance by the Company. NiSource expressly disclaims a duty to update any of the forward-looking statements contained in this news release.

* With regard to Net Operating Earnings Guidance for 2012 – it should be noted that there will likely be differences between net operating earnings and GAAP earnings for matters including, but not limited to, weather, restructuring costs and accounting changes NiSource is not able to estimate the impact of such items on GAAP earnings and, as such, is not providing earnings guidance on a GAAP basis.

SOURCE NiSource Inc.



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