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Westar Energy announces 2016 results.

 TOPEKA, Kan., Feb. 22, 2017 - Westar Energy, Inc. (WR) today announced earnings of $347 million, or $2.43 per share, for 2016 compared with earnings of $292 million, or $2.11 per share, for 2015. Fourth quarter 2016 earnings were $54 million, or $0.38 per share, compared with earnings of $39 million, or $0.28 per share, for the fourth quarter 2015.

"As we work to combine with KCP&L, we`ve managed expenses by keeping numerous positions vacant as people have retired while still delivering safe, reliable energy for our customers. We`ve also slowed other projects as we evaluate those plans in a combined electric company," said Mark Ruelle, president and chief executive officer. "The merger is integral to maintaining these savings."

Net income for 2016, compared with the prior year, was driven by recent price adjustments, an increase in corporate-owned life insurance income, and decreased costs from power plant retirements in late 2015. The higher revenue was partially offset by higher depreciation due to air quality control additions at La Cygne, higher costs at coal-fired plants from scheduled outages, and merger-related expenses.

Net income for the fourth quarter 2016, compared with 2015, increased primarily from favorable weather over prior year, recent price adjustments, and an increase in corporate-owned life insurance income.  The higher revenue was partially offset by higher expenses due to improving long-term grid reliability.

Dividend Declaration

The Board of Directors today declared a quarterly dividend of 40 cents per share payable April 3, 2017, on the company`s common stock payable to shareholders of record as of March 9, 2017. The new dividend reflects a 5 percent increase over the company`s previous quarterly dividend of 38 cents per share, and results in an indicated annual dividend of $1.60 per share.

Additional Information

Due to the pending transaction with Great Plains Energy, Westar Energy will no longer host a quarterly webcast and conference call. Investors may continue to contact our Investor Relations Department at (785) 575-8227.

This earnings announcement, a package of detailed fourth quarter and year-end 2016 financial information, the company`s annual report on Form 10-K for the period ended Dec. 31, 2016 and other filings the company made with the Securities and Exchange Commission are available on the company`s website at www.WestarEnergy.com.

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Westar Energy, Inc. (WR) is Kansas` largest electric utility. For more than a century, we have provided Kansans the safe, reliable electricity needed to power their businesses and homes. Every day our team of professionals takes on projects to generate and deliver electricity, protect the environment and provide excellent service to our nearly 700,000 customers. Westar has 7,800 MW of electric generation capacity fueled by coal, uranium, natural gas, wind and landfill gas. We are also a leader in electric transmission in Kansas. Our innovative customer service programs include mobile-enabled customer care, smart meter deployment and paving the way for electric vehicle adoption. Our employees live, volunteer and work in the communities we serve.

For more information about Westar Energy, visit us on the Internet at http://www.WestarEnergy.com. Westar Energy is on Facebook: www.Facebook.com/westarenergy and Twitter: www.Twitter.com/WestarEnergy.

Forward-looking statements: Certain matters discussed in this news release are "forward-looking statements." The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 has established that these statements qualify for safe harbors from liability. Forward-looking statements may include words like "believe," "anticipate," "target," "expect," "pro forma," "estimate," "intend," "guidance" or words of similar meaning. Forward-looking statements describe future plans, objectives, expectations or goals. Although Westar Energy believes that its expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, all forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty. The factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from these forward-looking statements include those discussed herein as well as (1) those discussed in the company`s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended Dec. 31, 2016 (a) under the heading, "Forward-Looking Statements," (b) in ITEM 1. Business, (c) in ITEM 1A. Risk Factors, (d) in ITEM 7. Management`s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations, and (e) in ITEM 8. Financial Statements and Supplementary Data: Notes 14 and 16; and (2) other factors discussed in the company`s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date such statement was made, and the company does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statement was made.

Media Contact:

Gina Penzig

Media Relations Manager

Phone: 785-575-8089

Gina.Penzig@westarenergy.com

Media line: 888-613-0003

Investor Contact:

Cody VandeVelde

Director, Investor Relations

Phone: 785-575-8227

Cody.VandeVelde@westarenergy.com


Westar Energy, Inc.

Consolidated Statements of Income

(Unaudited)

  Three Months Ended Dec. 31,   Twelve Months Ended Dec. 31,
  2016   2015   Change   % Change   2016   2015   Change   % Change
  (In Thousands, Except Per Share Amounts)
REVENUES:                              
Residential  $ 174,598     $ 157,843     $ 16,755     10.6   $ 838,998     $ 768,618     $ 70,380     9.2
Commercial  168,819     161,640     7,179     4.4   741,066     712,400     28,666     4.0
Industrial  98,575     95,751     2,824     2.9   413,298     400,687     12,611     3.1
Other retail  7,989     (11,654 )   19,643     168.6   (15,013 )   (17,155 )   2,142     12.5
Total Retail Revenues  449,981     403,580     46,401     11.5   1,978,349     1,864,550     113,799     6.1
Wholesale  84,351     68,869     15,482     22.5   304,871     318,371     (13,500 )   (4.2)
Transmission  64,717     60,765     3,952     6.5   253,713     241,835     11,878     4.9
Other  7,486     12,751     (5,265 )   (41.3)   25,154     34,408     (9,254 )   (26.9)
Total Revenues  606,535     545,965     60,570     11.1   2,562,087     2,459,164     102,923     4.2
OPERATING EXPENSES:                              
Fuel and purchased power  135,135     101,561     33,574     33.1   509,496     561,065     (51,569 )   (9.2)
SPP network transmission costs  58,838     57,392     1,446     2.5   232,763     229,043     3,720     1.6
Operating and maintenance  96,178     82,026     14,152     17.3   346,313     330,289     16,024     4.9
Depreciation and amortization  85,681     82,062     3,619     4.4   338,519     310,591     27,928     9.0
Selling, general and administrative  68,689     70,711     (2,022 )   (2.9)   261,451     250,278     11,173     4.5
Taxes other than income tax  46,133     43,854     2,279     5.2   191,662     156,901     34,761     22.2
Total Operating Expenses  490,654     437,606     53,048     12.1   1,880,204     1,838,167     42,037     2.3
INCOME FROM OPERATIONS  115,881     108,359     7,522     6.9   681,883     620,997     60,886     9.8
OTHER INCOME (EXPENSE):                              
Investment earnings  2,097     3,372     (1,275 )   (37.8)   9,013     7,799     1,214     15.6
Other income  8,369     866     7,503     866.4   34,582     19,438     15,144     77.9
Other expense  (3,672 )   (3,899 )   227     5.8   (18,012 )   (17,636 )   (376 )   (2.1)
Total Other Income (Expense)  6,794     339     6,455     nm   25,583     9,601     15,982     166.5
Interest expense  40,715     42,682     (1,967 )   (4.6)   161,726     176,802     (15,076 )   (8.5)
INCOME BEFORE INCOME TAXES  81,960     66,016     15,944     24.2   545,740     453,796     91,944     20.3
Income tax expense  24,165     24,190     (25 )   (0.1)   184,540     152,000     32,540     21.4
NET INCOME  57,795     41,826     15,969     38.2   361,200     301,796     59,404     19.7
Less: Net income attributable to noncontrolling interests 3,863     2,591     1,272     49.1   14,623     9,867     4,756     48.2
NET INCOME  ATTRIBUTABLE TO WESTAR ENERGY, INC.  53,932     39,235     14,697     37.5   346,577     291,929     54,648     18.7
Earnings per common share, basic  $ 0.38     $ 0.28     $ 0.10     35.7   $ 2.43     $ 2.11     $ 0.32     15.2
Average equivalent common shares outstanding  142,152     141,713     439     0.3   142,068     137,958     4,110     3.0
DIVIDENDS DECLARED PER COMMON SHARE  $ 0.38     $ 0.36     $ 0.02     5.6   $ 1.52     $ 1.44     $ 0.08     5.6
Effective income tax rate  29.5 %   36.6 %           33.8 %   33.5 %        
nm-not meaningful                                      

 



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The issuer of this announcement warrants that they are solely responsible for the content, accuracy and originality of the information contained therein.
Source: Westar Energy, Inc. via GlobeNewswire

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