ITC Holdings Corp. Reports First Quarter 2008 Results

Apr 30, 2008

NOVI, Mich., April 30, 2008 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ -- ITC Holdings Corp. (NYSE: ITC) today announced its first quarter results for the period ended March 31, 2008. Net income for the quarter was $25.5 million, or $0.53 per diluted share, compared to $16.9 million, or $0.39 per diluted share for the first quarter of 2007.

"We are very pleased with ITC's 2008 first quarter results," said Joseph L. Welch, president and CEO of ITC. "These results continue to demonstrate our ability to meet our commitments for the benefits of our customers and shareholders. 2008 is expected to be another strong year for ITC as we continue on our mission of investing in the electric transmission grid to improve electric power quality and reliability, enable the entrance of renewable resources and provide customers with equal access to wholesale power markets."

In the first quarter of 2008, ITCTransmission invested $52.1 million, METC invested $26.2 million and ITC Midwest invested $17.8 million in their respective transmission systems.

ITC reported operating revenues of $141.9 million for the first quarter 2008, an increase of $40.6 million over the comparable period last year. Network revenues increased by $28.2 million due to the December 2007 acquisition by ITC Midwest of the electric transmission assets of Interstate Power & Light (IPL), for which no revenues were included in our results of operations for the three months ended March 31, 2007. Additionally, METC and ITCTransmission recognized additional network revenues of $3.9 million and $2.0 million, respectively, due to higher net revenue requirements primarily due to higher rate base as a result of property, plant and equipment placed in service, among other factors. Point-to-point, scheduling, control and dispatch revenues increased primarily due to $1.7 million of ITC Midwest revenues.

Operation & Maintenance (O&M) expenses of $21.5 million during the first quarter of 2008 were $2.9 million higher than the same period in 2007. O&M expenses increased primarily due to expenses incurred by ITC Midwest that were not included in our results of operations for the three months ended March 31, 2007.

General and administrative (G&A) expenses of $18.0 million for the first quarter of 2008 were $3.0 million higher than the same period in 2007. G&A expenses increased primarily due to higher compensation and benefits mainly resulting from personnel additions and higher business expenses, all of which include incremental costs incurred by ITC Midwest.

Depreciation and amortization expenses increased $6.2 million in the three months ended March 31, 2008 compared to the same period in 2007. ITC Midwest recognized depreciation expenses of $4.1 million for the three months ended March 31, 2008. Depreciation and amortization also increased at ITCTransmission and METC primarily due to a higher depreciable asset base resulting from property, plant and equipment additions.

Taxes other than income taxes of $10.9 million in the first quarter of 2008 increased by $2.1 million compared to the same period in 2007. Taxes other than income taxes primarily increased due to property tax expense at ITC Midwest of $1.6 million.

In the first quarter of 2008 interest expense increased $11.6 million compared to the same period in 2007 primarily due to higher borrowing levels to finance our capital expenditures and the acquisition of the IPL transmission assets in December of 2007.

Guidance for 2008

For 2008 earnings per diluted share are expected to be between $1.90 and $2.00, as previously disclosed. Capital expenditures for 2008 are expected to be approximately $95-110 million, $105-130 million and $85-100 million for ITCTransmission, METC and ITC Midwest, respectively.

First Quarter Conference Call

ITC will conduct a conference call to discuss first quarter 2008 earnings results at 11:00 a.m. ET Thursday, May 1, 2008. Joseph L. Welch, president and CEO, will provide a business overview and Edward M. Rahill, senior vice president and CFO, will provide a financial update of the first quarter of 2008. Individuals wishing to participate in the conference call may dial toll-free (877) 675-4749 (domestic) or (719) 325-4905 (international); there is no passcode. The conference call replay, available through May 8, 2008 can be accessed by dialing toll-free (888) 203-1112 (domestic) or (719) 457-0820 (international), passcode 8240784. Investors, the news media and the public may listen to a live internet broadcast of the meeting at The webcast also will be archived on the ITC website at

Other Available Information

More detail about the 2008 first quarter results may be found in ITC's Form 10-Q filing. Once filed with the SEC, an electronic copy of the 10-Q can be found at ITC's website, Written copies can also be made available by contacting us either through our website or the phone listings below.

About ITC Holdings Corp.

ITC Holdings Corp. (NYSE: ITC) invests in the electricity transmission grid to improve electric reliability, improve access to markets, and lower the overall cost of delivered energy. ITC is the largest independent electricity transmission company in the country. Through its subsidiaries, ITCTransmission, Michigan Electric Transmission Company, LLC (METC) and ITC Midwest LLC, ITC operates regulated, high-voltage transmission systems in Michigan's Lower Peninsula and portions of Iowa, Minnesota, Illinois and Missouri serving a combined peak load in excess of 25,000 megawatts. ITC is also focused on new areas where significant transmission system improvements are needed through subsidiaries ITC Grid Development, ITC Great Plains and ITC Panhandle Transmission. For more information, please visit: (itc-ITC)

Safe Harbor Statement

This press release contains certain statements that describe our management's beliefs concerning future business conditions and prospects, growth opportunities and the outlook for our business and the electricity transmission industry based upon information currently available. Such statements are "forward-looking" statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Wherever possible, we have identified these forward-looking statements by words such as "anticipates", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "expects", "projects" and similar phrases. These forward-looking statements are based upon assumptions our management believes are reasonable. Such forward looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties which could cause our actual results, performance and achievements to differ materially from those expressed in, or implied by, these statements, including, among other things the risks and uncertainties disclosed in our annual report on Form 10-K and our quarterly reports on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time.

Because our forward-looking statements are based on estimates and assumptions that are subject to significant business, economic and competitive uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control or are subject to change, actual results could be materially different and any or all of our forward- looking statements may turn out to be wrong. They speak only as of the date made and can be affected by assumptions we might make or by known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Many factors mentioned in our discussion in this release and in our annual and quarterly reports will be important in determining future results. Consequently, we cannot assure you that our expectations or forecasts expressed in such forward-looking statements will be achieved. Actual future results may vary materially. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to publicly update any of our forward-looking or other statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise, unless required by law.




    (in thousands, except share and per share data)

                                                       Three months ended

                                                           March 31,

                                                       2008          2007

    OPERATING REVENUES                              $141,914       $101,274


      Operation and maintenance                       21,455         18,540

      General and administrative                      17,982         15,023

      Depreciation and amortization                   22,324         16,122

      Taxes other than income taxes                   10,885          8,770

        Total operating expenses                      72,646         58,455

    OPERATING INCOME                                  69,268         42,819


      Interest expense                                30,770         19,132

      Allowance for equity funds

       used during construction                       (3,096)        (1,240)

      Loss on extinguishment of debt                       -            349

      Other income                                      (514)          (702)

      Other expense                                      841            333

        Total other expenses (income)                 28,001         17,872

    INCOME BEFORE INCOME TAXES                        41,267         24,947

    INCOME TAX PROVISION                              15,746          8,092

    NET INCOME                                       $25,521        $16,855

    Basic earnings per share                           $0.54         $ 0.40

    Diluted earnings per share                         $0.53         $ 0.39

    Weighted-average basic shares                 47,296,243     42,091,356

    Weighted-average diluted shares               48,497,189     43,293,874

    Dividends declared per common share               $0.290         $0.275



    (in thousands, except share data)

    ASSETS                                           March 31,    December 31,

    Current assets                                     2008           2007

     Cash and cash equivalents                       $19,305         $2,616

     Accounts receivable                              45,021         40,919

     Inventory                                        22,459         26,315

     Deferred income taxes                             2,828          2,689

     Other                                             6,669          3,518

       Total current assets                           96,282         76,057

    Property, plant and equipment (net of

     accumulated depreciation and

     amortization of $893,774 and

     $879,843, respectively)                       2,043,164      1,960,433

    Other assets

     Goodwill                                        960,022        959,042

     Intangible assets (net of accumulated

      amortization of $3,781 and $3,025

      respectively)                                   54,626         55,382

     Regulatory assets - acquisition adjustments      84,707         86,054

     Regulatory assets - Attachment O

      revenue accrual (including accrued

      interest of $800 and $552, respectively)        38,764         20,537

     Other regulatory assets                          30,126         29,449

     Deferred financing fees (net of accumulated

      amortization of $6,500 and

      $5,138 respectively)                            19,850         14,201

     Other                                            10,321         12,142

       Total other assets                          1,198,416      1,176,807

    TOTAL ASSETS                                  $3,337,862     $3,213,297


    Current liabilities

     Accounts payable                                $53,395        $47,627

     Accrued payroll                                   5,869          8,928

     Accrued interest                                 14,153         23,088

     Accrued taxes                                    14,218         15,065

     ITC Midwest acquisition additional

      purchase price accrual                           5,033          5,402

     Other                                             8,751          6,317

       Total current liabilities                     101,419        106,427

    Accrued pension liability and

     postretirement liabilities                       16,629         13,934

    Deferred income taxes                            106,785         90,617

    Regulatory liabilities                           191,741        189,727

    Other                                              9,768          6,093

    Long-term debt                                 2,027,690      2,243,424


    Common stock, without par value,

     100,000,000 shares authorized, 43,398,488

     and 42,916,852 shares issued and

     outstanding at March 31, 2008 and

     December 31, 2007, respectively                 841,644        532,103

    Retained earnings                                 43,062         31,864

    Accumulated other comprehensive loss                (876)          (892)

       Total stockholders' equity                    883,830        563,075

    TOTAL LIABILITIES AND STOCKHOLDERS' EQUITY    $3,337,862     $3,213,297



    (in thousands)

                                                       Three months ended

                                                            March 31,

                                                       2008           2007


    Net income                                       $25,521        $16,855

    Adjustments to reconcile net income to

     net cash provided by operating activities:

       Depreciation and amortization expense          22,324         16,122

       Attachment O revenue accrual -

        including accrued interest                   (18,222)       (17,140)

       Deferred income tax expense                    14,423          8,092

       Allowance for equity funds

        used during construction                      (3,096)        (1,240)

       Stock-based compensation expense                1,762          1,127

       Amortization of loss on reacquired debt,

        deferred financing fees and debt discounts     1,976            953

       Other                                             117            (31)

       Changes in assets and liabilities,

        exclusive of changes shown separately        (10,125)       (14,737)

                 Net cash provided by

                  operating activities                34,680         10,001


       Expenditures for property,

        plant and equipment                          (94,564)       (73,788)

       IP&L transmission assets

        direct acquisition fees                         (933)             -

       Other                                               -            925

                 Net cash used in

                  investing activities               (95,497)       (72,863)


       Issuance of long-term debt                    557,895              -

       Repayment of long-term debt                  (765,000)             -

       Borrowings under revolving

        credit agreements                            164,500        235,900

       Repayments of revolving credit agreements    (173,200)      (141,700)

       Issuance of common stock                      308,904            341

       Common stock issuance costs                      (734)             -

       Dividends on common stock                     (14,319)       (11,655)

       Repurchase and retirement of common stock           -         (1,841)

       Debt issuance costs                            (4,123)          (333)

       Refundable deposits from generators

        for transmission network upgrades              3,583              -

                 Net cash provided by

                  financing activities                77,506         80,712

    NET INCREASE IN CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS         16,689         17,850

    CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS - Beginning of period    2,616         13,426

    CASH AND CASH EQUIVALENTS - End of period        $19,305        $31,276


SOURCE ITC Holdings Corp.


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