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NextEra Will Sell Four Natural-Gas-Fired Plants to LS Power

NextEra Energy Inc., the largest U.S. generator of wind power, agreed to sell four natural-gas-fired power plants to an affiliate of LS Power for $1.05 billion.

The transaction includes plants in California, Alabama, South Carolina and Virginia with a combined capacity of more than 2,100 megawatts, Juno Beach, Florida-based NextEra said in a regulatory filing today. The sale is expected to be accretive to earnings per share in future years, the company said.

NextEra Chief Financial Officer Armando Pimentel said in April that the company was exploring a sale of five gas-fueled plants to take advantage of rising interest in electricity generated by the fossil fuel. The company said today that it will “continue to explore options” for a fifth power facility, which is located in Rhode Island.

An affiliate of NextEra’s competitive energy unit initially will keep operating three of the facilities in the sale for five years and the fourth location for two years, according to today’s regulatory filing. NextEra said it expects net cash proceeds of about $500 million after the repayment of debt and costs for the deal.

NextEra said the transaction will result in a one-time charge of about $97 million, which it plans to exclude from adjusted earnings. The transaction is expected to close in the fourth quarter, if necessary approvals are received, the company said.

Citigroup Inc. and Credit Suisse Group AG advised a NextEra unit on the transaction, and Hogan Lovells acted as outside legal counsel, according to a statement from NextEra.

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