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Wisconsin Energy files applications to approve purchase of Integrys Energy Group

CHICAGO (WTAQ) - Wisconsin Energy filed applications Wednesday to seek approval from four states to buy Chicago's Integrys Energy Group.

The parent companies of We Energies and the Wisconsin Public Service utility would become one under the $9.1 billion deal.

Wisconsin Energy made its filings Wednesday with state regulators in Illinois, Minnesota, and Michigan as well as the Badger State. The required filings for federal approvals are expected later in August.

The utilities hope to complete their merger by the second half of next year, as they try to become the 14th-largest utility company in the nation.

In its applications, Wisconsin Energy said there would not be immediate savings with the acquisition -- but there would be savings over time, compared to what would happen without the deal.

The Milwaukee holding company promised to freeze Illinois customers' rates for two years. No such offer was made in its Wisconsin application.

It did say that acquisition and transaction costs would be funded by stockholders -- and not utility customers. The proposed acquisition was first announced last month.

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)