1999 TQS research survey ranks Southern Company first in customer satisfaction

ATLANTA– Southern Company’s five operating subsidiaries are the top five highest-rated companies in terms of overall customer satisfaction according to the sixth annual TQS Research national key account benchmark survey of the 70 largest utilities in the United States.

This represents the second year in a row Southern Company has claimed all top five positions.

The 1999 survey, according to large industrial and commercial accounts, ranked Southern Company highest in customer satisfaction, scoring high in customer loyalty, overall satisfaction and value.

Of the utilities surveyed, Gulf Power came in first place for overall satisfaction, followed in order by Georgia Power, Mississippi Power, Alabama Power and Savannah Electric.

“Our efforts to determine what our customers value and to be able to supply those products and services are beneficial for both us and our customers. We are able to create a true partnership with the customer while creating added revenue potential for us. Going beyond being a supplier of electricity – is the first step in developing a loyal customer. These survey results indicate our folks are doing the right things – and their efforts are paying off,” said Alan Martin, chief marketing officer of Southern Company.

Factors used to determine customer satisfaction included how complaints and inquiries were handled, price, reliability, energy efficiency and performance of the account representative.

Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is an international energy company with more than $35 billion in assets through regional utilities and operations around the world. It is the largest producer of electricity in the United States and one of the world’s leading independent power producers. Based in Atlanta, Southern Company is the parent firm of Alabama Power, Georgia Power, Gulf Power, Mississippi Power and Savannah Electric. Through its Southern Energy Inc. subsidiary, Southern Company supplies electricity in 10 countries on four continents and has a growing presence in North America with assets in the Northeast, the Midwest, California and Texas. Southern Company also provides energy-related marketing, trading and technical services in the United States and Europe and offers Southern LINC wireless telecommunications.