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Virgin Mobile eyes $100 million fund raising to spur expansion: FT

LONDON (Reuters) - Virgin Mobile is raising up to $100 million from investors and private equity groups to roll out the Virgin Mobile brand to at least six new markets, the Financial Times reported on Monday.

Virgin Mobile, a mobile virtual network operator that aims to reach $3 billion in worldwide revenues by 2020, is seeking to expand to Brazil, Colombia, Chile, Poland, South Africa and Oman. It currently has 18 million subscribers in nine countries.

Richard Branson, head of the London-based Virgin Group, was quoted by the FT as saying that he hoped to expand Virgin Mobile's central and eastern European operation from Poland, which he will launch in 10 days, to Russia, and perhaps Turkey.

"We're waiting for a license in Russian for (Virgin Atlantic) flights to Moscow. If we're successful in that, it will help us push into Russia proper" with Virgin Mobile, he said.

(Reporting by Stephen Mangan; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

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