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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 February 2006, 08:26 GMT
New user boost for Virgin Mobile
Sir Richard Branson
Sir Richard Branson supports a deal with NTL
Virgin Mobile has said user numbers in the three months to the end of 2005 were up 12% on a year ago, as talks with cable suitor NTL continued.

The UK's fifth-largest mobile operator said its base of active customers was up to 4.35 million, compared with 3.88 million in the year-earlier period.

It gained 193,000 active users - those who used their phones in the quarter - in the three months to 31 December.

Average revenues per user rose to 123, from 121 the previous quarter.

The company, 72%-owned by Sir Richard Branson, operates on networks owned by airtime provider T-Mobile.

NTL talks continue

Our discussions with NTL about a potential offer are ongoing
Tom Alexander, Virgin Mobile chief executive

In December, Virgin Mobile's board rejected an 817m ($1.4bn) bid from cable operator NTL, despite the deal being backed by major shareholder Sir Richard.

The board said then that the offer undervalued the business.

NTL hopes to add Virgin's mobile phone facilities to its existing offering of TV, fixed line phones and broadband.

Virgin said it was continuing talks about a possible takeover.

Tom Alexander, chief executive of Virgin Mobile, said: "Our discussions with NTL about a potential offer are ongoing and we will make further announcements about these in due course."

He added: "Our continuing strategy of attracting high quality customers in the prepay segment fuelled our growth during the quarter."

Virgin Mobile rejects NTL offer
08 Dec 05 |  Business
NTL and Virgin in takeover talks
05 Dec 05 |  Business
Virgin Mobile snubs first NTL bid
07 Dec 05 |  Business
Virgin Mobile's user numbers jump
01 Feb 05 |  Business

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