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News Release

Tampa Electric Reaches 600,000 Customers

TAMPA, February 26, 2003

Tampa Electric today established service for customer number 600,000. The lucky customer can expect a visit from the company's version of a sweepstakes prize patrol bearing a gift basket filled with presents.

"This is a milestone for Tampa Electric so we've put together a welcome basket with an annual family pass for four to the Florida Aquarium, Tampa Bay Lightning season tickets, balloons, cookies - all kinds of things!" said Jackie Perrone, E-business communications specialist.

It took more than 50 years for Tampa Electric to reach its first 100,000 customers - from 1899 to 1952. The company reached 200,000 customers in November 1969; 300,000 customers in January 1979; 400,000 customers in December1985; 500,000 customers in December 1995; and 600,000 in February 2003.

Tampa Electric projects reaching the 700,000 customers by year end 2010.

"With a customer base growing at a annual rate of about 2.5 percent, Tampa Electric continually seeks new ways to improve our service levels," said Tom Hernandez, vice president for Energy Delivery. "We want to provide excellent customer service along with clean, reliable energy," he said.

Tampa Electric Company is the principal subsidiary of TECO Energy, Inc. (NYSE:TE), a diversified holding company of energy-related businesses that include Peoples Gas System, TECO Power Services, TECO Transport, TECO Coal and TECO Solutions.

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TECO Energy, Tampa Electric, Peoples Gas
TECO Energy, Inc.
702 N. Franklin Street
Tampa, Florida 33602
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