Virgin Mobile: It's Not (Just) the Economy Driving Prepaid

Published on August 10, 2009
by Andrew LaVallee

Virgin Mobile’s (VM) chief executive sounded an upbeat note on the prepaid wireless market, as the carrier shed net subscribers but posted a bigger profit.

Prepaid services have gained traction with consumers as a potentially lower-cost alternative to traditional monthly cellphone plans. Virgin Mobile has focused in recent quarters on flat-rate monthly plans, but Dan Schulman, its CEO, said “I do think prepaid is here to stay,” in a conference call with analysts after it reported earnings.

“I do not think that it is just the economic environment that is driving the uptick. I think the economic environment helped to make people aware that prepaid was not just for people who couldn’t move to postpaid,” he added.

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