Allete to acquire Enventis, Inc.

ALLETE, Inc. announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire Enventis, Inc., a data network systems provider headquartered in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area.

DULUTH, Minn., July 18, 2001 — ALLETE, Inc. announced that it has reached an agreement to acquire Enventis, Inc., a data network systems provider headquartered in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area.

The transaction is expected to close by the end of July and will help position ALLETE's telecommunications business as one of the integrated data service providers in the upper Midwest. Enventis, Inc. will operate as a subsidiary of ALLETE's telecommunications business, MP Telecom.

"The addition of Enventis to MP Telecom is an excellent fit," said Walt Prahl, MP Telecom President and Chief Executive Officer. "Enventis' expertise, highly skilled staff and solid reputation in developing and applying converged IP solutions will enhance MP Telecom's services and help us build stronger relationships with joint customers."

Enventis, Inc., founded in 1999, provides advanced network engineering services and is a reseller and integrator of Cisco products.

The company designs, deploys and supports multi-service networks combining voice, video and data traffic into a single standards-based infrastructure and has become one of the network integrators in the Twin Cities.

"By partnering with MP Telecom, we can provide better tools and more services to customers," said Rich Henderson, Enventis President and Chief Executive Officer. "Our new partnership will enable Enventis to enhance our multi-service offerings and greatly broaden our reach. We are proud to be associated with ALLETE."

MP Telecom is a Cisco Powered Network provider in Minnesota. MP Telecom's network is based on a Cisco platform, making the Enventis acquisition a powerful union of products, services and technology.

"This strategic acquisition will significantly enhance both the breadth and scale of our telecommunications service offerings in the upper Midwest," said Bob Edwards, ALLETE Executive Vice President. "We welcome the Enventis team as an integral part of our strategy to become the region's premier integrated data service provider."

MP Telecom is a wholly owned subsidiary of ALLETE, a multi-services company with corporate headquarters in Duluth, Minn.

ALLETE holdings include the second largest wholesale automobile auction network in North America; the provider of independent auto dealer inventory financing; the largest investor-owned water utilities in Florida and North Carolina; significant real estate holdings in Florida and a low-cost electric utility that serves some of the largest industrial customers in the United States.

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