Shareholders Back Westar Sale to Great Plains

    Two of the biggest public companies in the Kansas City region area are poised to become one considerably larger organization: Shareholders of Topeka-based Westar Energy have agreed to sell the company to Great Plains Energy, parent of Kansas City Power & Light Co.

    If approved by regulators, the union of those two utilities would create the third-largest public company in the region, with revenues of nearly $6 billion–trailing only Sprint Corp. and Seaboard Corp.

    A news release from Westar said that 63 percent of the company’s outstanding shares were voted, with 96 percent of those backing the merger.

    Shareholders for Great Plains are also voting today on whether to approve the deal, which had a total value of $12.2 billion deal. The sale was proposed in May after Westar had solicited bids, and one factor in the agreement with Great Plains was that it would keep Westar’s headquarters in Topeka. 

    Next up in the process are regulatory hurdles on the state level with the Kansas Corporation Commission and Missouri Public Service Commission, then at the federal levelwith he Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, among others.