More reports on: Telecom
Virgin launches GSM services in Mumbai, Maharashtra news
19 February 2010

Virgin Mobile India, a Tata Teleservices brand, has launched GSM services in Mumbai and Maharashtra telecom circles to tap the growing market of young pre-paid subscribers, Virgin Mobile chief executive officer M A Madhusudan said on Thursday.

''We are initially investing Rs500 crore till September 2010 to develop our sales and services distribution network, customer care and brand building,'' he said. Last month, the company entered the Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Orissa markets.

''The company's pan-India service rollout will be completed by the end of this financial year,'' Madhusudan said. The firm has a revenue sharing model with Tata Teleservices and operates in 22 telecom circles with a base of 60 million subscribers, he added.

The firm is targeting the growing youth subscribers in urban India. ''Out of the 520 million mobile subscriber market in the country, 50 per cent are youth, out of which 75 per cent of are city-based,'' Madhusudan said. Virgin Mobile has always concentrated on the young market.

He said the company was targeting the pre-paid youth market, which at present comprised 96 per cent, while post-paid was only 4 per cent. ''We are the first one in the country to offer guaranteed pre-paid bills to our subscribers and we expect many pre-paid customers to switch over to us,'' Madhusudan said. The company is targeting 10-per cent market share in the urban youth segment in the next three years.

The customers are offered a rate of 20 paise per minute for STD and local calls to Virgin numbers, and local calls at 40 paise per minute and STD calls at 50 paise per minute on other networks, without having to subscribe to any 'packages'.

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Virgin launches GSM services in Mumbai, Maharashtra