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In this order: Vonage "please don't leave us" promotion, analyst downgrade, stock below $10

Pali Research analyst Richard Greenfield tells Bloomberg.com that when he called Vonage to cancel his account, he was offered a discounted rate if he would stay.

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Pali Research analyst Richard Greenfield tells Bloomberg.com that when he called Vonage to cancel his account, he was offered a discounted rate if he would stay.

The offer involved lowering his service plan from $24.99 a month to $19.99, as well as the waiver of a fee usually imposed by Vonage for changing pricing plans.

No word on whether Greenfield took the offer. 

Yet apparently that offer- presumably made incognito - had a major effect on Greenfield. Based in part on a trend gleaned from that call, the analyst downgraded his assessment on Vonage stock from "neutral" to "sell."

"It is increasingly apparent that Vonage is struggling to drive subscriber growth following the IPO," wrote Greenfield in a letter to clients yesterday. He added his view that the lower-rate in lieu of cancellation initiative on the part of Vonage indicates Vonage feels uner pressure to ask customers. 

Om adds that Greenfield wrote that when a new customer signs up for Vonage they are normally billed a $29.99 activation fee and if they cancel within the first twelve months they are billed a $39.99 cancellation fee. However, the current second line promotion waives the activation fee, gives a customer two free months of phone service, and the cancellation fee is waived. Essentially, Vonage is giving away a second line to all existing customers for two months with no strings attached (“no risk”). 

Apparently, the market took this viewpoint to heart. Vonage shares closed yesterday at $9.82, the first time the closing price had dipped below $10 a share since the IPO last month.