Southern Company ranked highest in customer satisfaction by J.D. Power and Associates/Navigant Consulting, Inc.

ATLANTA—Southern Company [NYSE: SO] ranked highest in customer satisfaction for electric service to midsize business customers in the southern United States in 1999, according to the latest J.D. Power and Associates/Navigant Consulting, Inc. [NYSE: NCI] study.

The 2000 Electric Utility Midsize Business Customer Satisfaction Study also ranks Southern Company highest in overall customer satisfaction with midsize business electric service in the United States. Midsize business customers in the south gave Southern Company the highest ratings for company image, customer service, billing and payment.

“By keeping rates 15 percent below the national average and obtaining consistently high marks in customer service, Southern Company leads the way in providing the highest quality service to not only midsize business customers but to all customers,” said Barbara Hingst, Southern Company vice president. The study shows that utilities in the southern region of the United States consistently receive higher ratings across all factors of customer satisfaction. Correspondingly, midsize business customers in the South also report the lowest levels of monthly electricity expenditures, on average.

Headquartered in Agoura Hills, Calif., J.D. Power and Associates is a global marketing information services firm operating in key business sectors including market research, forecasting and customer satisfaction. The firm’s quality and satisfaction measurements are based on actual customer responses from more than one million consumers annually. J.D. Power and Associates can be accessed through the World Wide Web at

Navigant Consulting, Inc. is a global management-consulting firm that provides strategic, financial, management and expert services to regulated Fortune 100 companies, government agencies, legal councils and regulated and network industries. The company focuses on industries undergoing substantial structural change and the issues that devise it.

Southern Company (NYSE: SO) is an international energy company that operates more than 48,000 megawatts of electric generating capacity worldwide. It is the largest producer of electricity in the United States and one of the world’s largest independent power producers. Southern Company subsidiaries and their affiliates serve 12 million retail customers worldwide and millions more through the wholesale market. 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 has operations in 12 countries on five 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.