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Virgin Mobile Founder challenges Rogers to stop misleading consumers

TORONTO (ONTARIO) November 6, 2009

In response to Rogers Communications’ recent announcement that they are removing the System Access Fee and replacing it with the Government Regulatory Recovery Fee (GRRF), Virgin Chairman Sir Richard Branson is once again throwing down a challenge. Branson has called for the establishment of new standards for the mobile industry that would abolish bogus, made-up fees and force mobile companies to stop misleading consumers.


Sir Richard, Chairman of the Virgin Group and founder of Virgin Mobile Canada said, “I’d like to congratulate Rogers for removing one fee that never made sense, but I’m perplexed to hear that they’ve replaced it with another equally confusing one. I suppose that they hoped by putting ‘Government’ in the title that people would assume the fee is legitimate. It clearly states in Rogers’ own advertising fine print that ‘It is not a tax or charge that the government requires Rogers to collect.’ Are they deliberately trying to mislead the public?”


“We encourage Rogers to think again,” continued Branson. “Canadians are smarter than that and they deserve to be treated better. At Virgin Mobile we don’t make up fees and we’re always clear about what our customers are being charged for.”


The challenge from Branson is being backed up by a new national ad campaign from Virgin Mobile that directly calls out Rogers’ bogus fee and asks for honesty to replace the smoke and mirrors. As well, Virgin Mobile will approach relevant industry authorities to discuss its concerns and the establishment of more stringent standards to protect consumers.


“We’re proud of the mobile phone service we provide,” said Robert Blumenthal, President, Virgin Mobile Canada. “We innovate and put customers first, delivering everything people need without being sneaky. We love our customers and treating them properly is just the right thing to do. If you’re with Rogers today, we’re not surprised that you might be scratching your head. We invite you to switch over to us and see what mobile phone service should really be like.”


About Virgin Mobile


The Virgin Mobile group of companies has attracted more than 12 million customers worldwide. As the No.1 mobile youth network, Virgin Mobile Canada's mission is to be Canada’s most loved mobile company. Its simpler, better deals offer customers control, flexibility and choice to design mobile packages that truly works for them. J.D. Power and Associates ranked Virgin Mobile highest in customer satisfaction with prepaid wireless service for four years in a row  and 91% of customers would recommend Virgin Mobile to a friend.


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 www.virginmobile.ca or by calling 1-888-999-2321.


For more information, please contact:
Erica Faltous, Hill & Knowlton Canada
416-413-4695 / 416-400-0171

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