News In Brief

FPL Group, the parent of Florida Power & Light Co., was expected to announce a merger agreement that would make it the largest power generating system and second-largest nuclear power company in the US. With the acquisition of the New Orleans-based Entergy Corp. for about $7 billion in stock, the new holding company would have 6.3 million customers and a market value of $16.4 billion.

Just days after facing scrutiny from federal regulators over its planned merger with America Online Inc., Time Warner made its first deal allowing an independent Internet service provider access to its cable system. Time Warner Cable announced a preliminary agreement with Juno Online Services Inc. to offer high-speed Web capabilities to customers, the companies said. Currently, the only such provider available to its subscribers is Road Runner LLC, a joint venture between Time Warner and AT&T.

National Computer Systems (NCS), a global provider of information services, has agreed to be acquired by Pearson PLC, a London-based multimedia group, the latter announced. Pearson owns the Financial Times newspaper and has interests in educational publishing, magazines, and television. The deal, valued at $2.5 billion, comes on the heels of Pearson's 1998 purchase of the Simon & Schuster textbook division, last year's agreement for a joint venture with America Online, and acquisition of the Internet-based Family Education Network two months ago. NCS's headquarters are in Minneapolis.

(c) Copyright 2000. The Christian Science Publishing Society

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