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Alpha Natural Resources Announces Strategic Repositioning Plan

-Company is reshaping mine operations, establishing core set of durable, cost-competitive assets with sharp focus on metallurgical coal business
-Organizational streamlining will reduce overhead costs by $150 million, accelerate adoption of operating best practices and performance improvements
-Mine idlings and production curtailments will reduce annual coal output approximately 16 million tons by early 2013

BRISTOL, Va., Sept. 18, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Alpha Natural Resources (NYSE: ANR), a leading U.S.-based coal supplier, today outlined plans to reshape its portfolio of operations to meet the evolving demands of a changing global coal market.

By early 2013, the company will be fully aligned to focus on two key strategic priorities: enhancing Alpha's metallurgical coal leadership position in both the domestic and international markets; and establishing a durable core of cost-competitive thermal coal assets better suited to supply structurally shifting power markets in the United States and tap into new thermal markets overseas.

Kevin Crutchfield, chairman and CEO of Alpha Natural Resources, said, "With fundamental changes taking place in our business, we're taking decisive actions that set the table for Alpha to compete successfully as a leader in the global coal markets for years to come.

"We're taking a long-term view of the thermal coal market, and we believe there are solid opportunities for diversified suppliers like Alpha to produce and sell thermal coal profitably into a smaller domestic market and to customers in new markets overseas," Crutchfield added. "At the same time we have a big opportunity to advance Alpha's position as a premier supplier of metallurgical coal. Forecasts point to more than 100 million tons of increased seaborne metallurgical coal demand by the end of this decade, and persistent structural supply limitations exist on sources of high-quality metallurgical coal. We intend to participate meaningfully in the market upside with costs that are globally competitive."

Alpha's strategic plan is designed to ensure that the company's asset portfolio and administrative structure is optimally positioned to compete successfully in the new market environment. Following are key elements of the plan that will be launched beginning today and extend into early 2013: 

Rationalize higher-cost thermal coal production, creating a durable, sustainable thermal coal franchise:

Enhance Alpha's international metallurgical coal business to capitalize on new opportunities:

Streamline and optimize Alpha's corporate structure:

"The focus and shape of our company need to change to reflect our new business environment," said Paul Vining, Alpha's president. "We must have a nimble operating model, superior cost management and an overhead structure that matches our streamlined operational footprint. We recognize these changes will impact our people, suppliers and communities in some areas where we operate. Alpha is committed to acting transparently and responsibly throughout the transition, with respectful consideration of our people and all other stakeholders."

Financial impact and outlook:

About Alpha Natural Resources

With $7.1 billion in total revenue in 2011, Alpha Natural Resources ranks as America's second-largest coal producer by revenue and third-largest by production. Alpha is the nation's largest supplier of metallurgical coal used in the steel-making process and is a major supplier of thermal coal to electric utilities and manufacturing industries. In 2011, the company had more than 200 customers on five continents. More information about Alpha can be found on the company's Web site at www.alphanr.com

Forward-Looking Statements

Statements in this news release which are not statements of historical fact are "forward-looking statements" within the Safe Harbor provision of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements are not guarantees of future performance. Many factors could cause our actual results, performance or achievements, or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward looking-statements. These factors are discussed in detail in our Annual Report on Form 10-K, Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and in our other filings with the SEC. We make forward-looking statements based on currently available information, and we assume no obligation to update the statements made today or contained in our Annual Report or other filings due to changes in underlying factors, new information, future developments, or otherwise, except as required by law.

SOURCE Alpha Natural Resources

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