MEDIA RELEASE ARCHIVES
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Sir Richard Branson and Criss Angel unveil exciting news for Canada's 16 million post-paid customers
TORONTO (ONTARIO) November 12, 2007
TORONTO (ONTARIO) November 12, 2007 – Two and a half years after revolutionizing the pre-paid market, Sir Richard Branson, chairman of the Virgin Group of Companies and founder Virgin Mobile Canada, today announced plans to shake things up again by entering the post-paid market, in early 2008.
Virgin Mobile has experienced unprecedented customer growth since it launched and has just been awarded the JD Power Award for highest customer satisfaction in pre-paid services for the third year running. “Virgin Mobile will bring real competition and offer customers a simpler, more transparent, and fairer post-paid option,” said Sir Richard.
At the press conference Sir Richard was joined by MINDFREAK Criss Angel who performed one of his world renowned and mind-bending predictions. After making Sir Richard “appear” on stage from out of nowhere, Criss Angel predicted the future. He invited the crowd to answer a series of questions about their mobile phones to which he had predicted the answers and placed in a suspended locked box. Criss Angel then stunned the audience by correctly revealing the answers on a Virgin Mobile phone.
Sir Richard then revealed his own mind-blowing prediction about the future – Virgin Mobile will be launching post-paid in early 2008 and consumers will be the ultimate winners.
“Since launch, Virgin has fought to bring Canadians a simpler, more honest mobile phone service,” said Sir Richard. “Canadians on annual plans have been asking us to create an offer for them and to take the ‘con’ out of contracts. Today we’re excited to let you know that we will do exactly that and we can't wait to completely shake up the post-paid market.”
With over 800,000 people set to sign contracts this holiday season, Sir Richard warned Canadians to be careful what they sign. Branson announced that Virgin Mobile will offer unlimited free text for a year to the first 500 customers who pre-register for the new post-paid service at virginmobile.ca. Plus, one lucky Canadian who pre-registers will also win free Virgin Mobile service for life!
Andrew Black, president & CEO of Virgin Mobile, stated “Canadian mobile customers have told us they feel frustrated by confusing fees and a lack of flexibility. At Virgin we put our customers in the driver’s seat, so consumers can look forward to an exciting new choice that will deliver exactly what they’re after.” To demonstrate Virgin Mobile’s transparency, Angel also taught the audience the truth behind a trick of his own by performing a “Teach-a-Trick”.
J.D. Power and Associates Award
Virgin Mobile will offer its new post-paid customers the same brilliant and award-winning customer service that its pre-paid customers have come to know and love.
J.D. Power and Associates announced this week that, for the third year in a row, Virgin Mobile has been voted highest in customer satisfaction with pre-paid wireless service.
“Virgin Mobile is now known for its unmatched customer service and for having Canada’s happiest customers,” said Black. “The post-paid mobile space has some of the most frustrated customers in the country, and we commit to challenging everyone in our industry to pick up their game so customers get the service they want and deserve.” Black then stated, “We will continue to provide customer service that is second to none. With Virgin Mobile it will be easy to talk to a real live person, we will happily answer all of your questions, we will work to solve your problems on the first call, and we will do it with a smile.”
Sir Richard also officially announced the launch of Virgin Unite Canada – the independent charitable arm of Virgin. Virgin Unite harnesses the global resources of the Virgin Group to drive grass roots solutions that create a tangible change in the lives of people in need around the world.
To mark the launch, Sir Richard will tonight host Midnight Magic – a fundraising gala at the environmentally friendly Direct Energy Centre in Toronto. In true Virgin style, the evening breaks the typical charity event mould by starting with a stellar line-up of entertainment including legendary New Wave pioneer Elvis Costello, modern day mystic Criss Angel, the International Queen Of Burlesque Dita Von Teese, and Canadian musical sensation Jully Black.
Proceeds from the Midnight Magic gala will go to Virgin Unite’s ‘Heaven’s Angels’. This innovative program trains and supports an army of health care workers that use motorbikes to deliver life-saving medical supplies to people in need of care in remote and impoverished areas of Sub-Saharan Africa.
“I’m excited to be able to officially introduce Virgin Unite to Canadians and now give them the chance to be part of some of the wonderful work Virgin Unite does.” said Richard Branson. “Canadians are well known for their compassion and generosity in helping around the world and at home, so together we can achieve so much and affect change where it's needed most.”
About Virgin Mobile Canada
The Virgin Mobile group of companies has attracted more than 10 million customers worldwide. As the #1 mobile youth network, Virgin Mobile Canada’s mission is to connect, entertain, and reward like nobody else. Its simpler, better deal offers customers control, flexibility, and choice to design mobile packages that truly work for them. J.D. Power and Associates ranked Virgin Mobile highest in customer satisfaction with prepaid wireless service for three years in a row, 91% of customers would recommend Virgin Mobile to a friend, and a 2007 independent survey showed that Virgin Mobile has the happiest customers in Canada.
Virgin Mobile phones are available at more than 4,000 locations with top-up cards available at more than 10,000 locations nationally. Virgin Mobile products can also be purchased online at http://www.virginmobile.ca or by calling 877-662-2824.
About Virgin Unite
Launched in the UK in 2004, Virgin Unite is the global independent charitable arm of the Virgin Group. Richard Branson and Virgin fully fund operational costs, so that 100% of all donations received go directly to the frontline where it is needed the most. Virgin Unite was created by Richard Branson and Virgin Group employees around the world to harness Virgin's people, resources, and energy to make a difference to forgotten people and overlooked issues. Virgin Unite has registered charities in the UK, and U.S., South Africa and Australia and most recently became registered in Canada. For more information, go to www.virginunite.com.
For more information or to arrange an interview, please contact:
Hill & Knowlton Canada
416-413-4695 / 416-655-8221
Virgin Mobile Canada
416-607-8412 / 647-378-8859
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