How Richard Branson Built His $5 Billion Fortune

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Making money is when you use your own time and energy and a bit of creativity once, and obtain paid over and over and once again . Making money puts you within the driver’s seat. It allows you to be independent, not contingent somebody else controlling your wealth potential on a regular basis.

Building a brand

Bran-son began building his empire within the music business. In 1970, he launched a mail-order discount record business. subsequent year, he opened his first Virgin Records store in London, and in 1973 he launched a record label to enrich his retail business.

By the top of the last decade , Virgin Records had become a big force within the music industry because of its early involvement within the punk movement. In 1979, the corporate opened the primary Virgin Mega-store: a huge record store that later spawned a worldwide chain.

In 1984, Richard Bran-son demonstrated the facility of Mary brand by launching into a totally new industry: airlines. Virgin Atlantic became a serious competitor to British Airways on variety of key long-haul routes from London, winning market share through superior customer service and innovative touches designed for premium travelers.

Since then, Bran-son has put the virgin label on a good sort of businesses. Today, Virgin-branded airlines in Australia and therefore the U.S. complement the flagship Virgin Atlantic. Virgin Media may be a major U.K. cable operator. Virgin Money has become a serious financial services company in Britain also . the virgin Mobile wireless brand exists in many countries.

The brand is that the key

It’s interesting to notice that Richard Bran-son has built his $5 billion fortune albeit many companies bearing the “Virgin” name have had uneven financial performance — some have gone under.

Virgin Mega-stores have disappeared thanks to the rapid decline of physical CD and DVD sales. Virgin Cola made a big splash within the U.S. and the U.K. but couldn’t compete with the soda-industry heavyweights. Virgin America has lost nearly $400 million over its first seven years in business. Bran-son’s flagship airline, Virgin Atlantic, has also racked up big losses within the last decade.

So how did Bran-son become so wealthy? the key to his success is his control of Mary brand. In fact, Virgin Group has full ownership of only a couple of businesses within the Virgin empire. quite few companies bearing the virgin brand haven’t any reference to Virgin Group aside from licensing the name.

In 1992, Bran-son sold his record label to EMI for nearly $1 billion to boost capital for Virgin Atlantic. Bran-son also disposed of Mary Mega-store chain in 2007, two years before it folded. In 2000, Bran-son sold a 49% stake in Virgin Atlantic to Singapore Airlines for nearly $1 billion. it had been good timing: Delta Air Lines bought that 49% stake for just $360 million in late 2012.

All of the businesses bearing the “Virgin” moniker that aren’t wholly owned by Virgin Group must pay royalties to be used of the name . These fees can amount to many dollars annually for every business, and represent risk-free income. Thus, even money-losing companies like Virgin America are still building Bran-son’s wealth.

The rise of Virgin Media within the U.K. also showcases the facility of the brand. Cable company NTL: Telewest bought the U.K. Virgin Mobile business. This added wireless services to its offerings — but more important, it gave the corporate access to Mary brand. It quickly rebranded all its offerings as Virgin Media.

Bran-son got a windfall in more than $300 million last year when Virgin Media was sold to Liberty Global. Moreover, Virgin Group still receives about £10 million in annual royalties from Virgin Media.

Lessons for investors

A little quite 40 years ago, Richard Bran-son was the lowly owner of one record shop. Today, he’s worth quite twice the maximum amount as McCartney , Jagger , and Elton John combined!

It just goes to point out that while talent is a method to riches, another path to long-term wealth is to maximize the facility of great brands. Numerous companies within the Virgin family are happy to pay many dollars a year to Virgin Group just to profit from the halo effect of the virgin brand.

Plenty of other companies out there enrich products just through brand power. for instance , believe the worth premium Starbucks gets for a bag of coffee just by putting its brand thereon .

By investing in companies with this sort of brand name power for the long haul, you also can build your long-term wealth. Just don’t expect to form enough money to shop for your own island within the Caribbean.

Richard Bran-son’s net worth: 5.1 billion

Seemingly born to be an entrepreneur, Richard Bran-son started his first two business in 1968 when he was just 17 years old. Two years later, in 1970, he opened his first business under the virgin Group umbrella, and therefore the rest is history.

Though perhaps best known for its airlines, the virgin Group consists of quite 60 businesses today. Combined, they carry in additional than $24 billion in annual revenue and use 71,000 people in 35 countries, consistent with The Telegraph.

Unlike many moguls, Bran-son truly cares about his companies. He sold Virgin Records for $1 billion in 1992, but rather than celebrating, he famously spent London’s Lad-broke Grove in tears, distraught over cutting ties with the business.

These days, the father of two dedicates most of his time to Virgin Unite, the virgin Group’s nonprofit entrepreneurial foundation. Established in 2004, the charity supports ventures close to Branson’s heart, including advocating for gay rights and speaking out against poaching.


Virgin Unite’s projects are changing the planet for the higher . a number of the foundation’s work includes providing life-saving healthcare to people in Kenya, South Africa and Nigeria; creating Branson Centres, which have helped 4,000 entrepreneurs get their businesses off the ground; and fighting for LGBT rights in Uganda.

Richard Branson’s Virgin Airlines

A cancelled flight from Puerto Rico to British Virgin Islands served as Branson’s inspiration for Virgin Atlantic. Then a young businessman, he had a date expecting him, so he chartered a plane and charged other passengers $39 for a one-way ticket.

Founded in 1984, Virgin Atlantic is an innovative airline with a 2016 pre-tax profit of about $28 million. the virgin brand also includes Virgin Australia and previously, Virgin America, which recently merged with Alaska Airlines.

Alaska Airlines bought Virgin America in 2016 for $2.6 billion. Despite earning nearly $800 million from the sale, Branson opposed it and publicly expressed disappointment that he didn’t have enough voting shares within the company to halt the takeover.

Richard Branson’s Virgin Galactic


Known for his innate curiosity and sense of adventure, it’s probably not too surprising that spaceflight is on Branson’s agenda. Founded by the billionaire entrepreneur in 2004, Virgin Galactic wants to form spaceflight accessible to everyone.

The privately-funded company has received $600 million from Branson, the virgin Group and Abu Dhabi’s Aabar Investments Group. So far, approximately 700 people have paid a full-price deposit of $250,000 to become a Virgin Galactic future astronaut.

Sending humans into space has been a challenging process — a pilot died during a test flight of the company’s SpaceShipTwo in Oct. 2014 — but Branson believes his company is finally almost able to launch. during a 2017 interview with The Telegraph, he said he hopes to be into space himself next year.

How Richard Branson Built His $5 Billion Fortune

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