Richard Branson

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Winklevoss Twins Going to Space, Via Bitcoins

They use their go-to currency to book on Virgin Galactic

(Newser) - Virgin Galactic has signed up two more high-profile passengers to space: the Winklevoss twins of Facebook fame. In a blog post , Tyler wrote that he and Cameron had paid for their tickets using their favorite currency—bitcoins.
  • Tyler's take: "It is in this vein that Cameron and
... More »

Now You Can Pay for Your Ticket to Space With Bitcoins

Virgin Galactic latest to accept digital currency

(Newser) - Good news, future space travelers. Now, you can pay for your flight to outer space with money from cyberspace. Virgin Galactic founder Sir Richard Branson announced Friday the company will accept bitcoins as an alternative to traditional currency—adding he has already had one customer use it to pay. Branson... More »

Mandela Turns 95; Said to Be Improving

World celebrates with service

(Newser) - It's Nelson Mandela's 95th birthday, and the anti-apartheid leader remains in the hospital—but South African President Jacob Zuma says his health is "steadily improving," the BBC reports. Mandela's daughter, Zindzi, echoed the sentiment, saying he was "making remarkable progress and we look forward... More »

Cousteau Grandson Spending October Underwater

Fabien Cousteau looks to break grandfather's record

(Newser) - While you're spending October planning what candy you'll hand out on Halloween, Fabien Cousteau will be spending the month underwater. He's aiming to spend a record-breaking 31 days in the deep blue, surfacing on October 31, on the 50th anniversary of his grandfather Jacques Cousteau's record-setting... More »

Justin Bieber Is Going to Space

Sadly, he is not staying there

(Newser) - Justin Bieber and manager Scooter Braun are going to space as part of Virgin Galactic's space tourism program, Sir Richard Branson has announced. Tragically, Branson did not indicate that Bieber would be left in space once he arrived. Bieber will join such other celebrity "astronauts" as Ashton Kutcher... More »

Cross-Dressing Branson Pays Lost Bet

Oh, and he shaved his legs

(Newser) - Just another day in the never-normal life of Richard Branson, who today had nothing better to do than shave his legs, smear about two kilos of red lipstick on his face, squeeze into a red skirt, and dump orange juice all over a fellow airline magnate. It was all in... More »

Today's Best April Fool's Stories

Twitter, Google, and Virgin roll out doozeys

(Newser) - You may have seen Google's plan to "shut down YouTube," but that wasn't the only media-perpetrated April Fool's prank today, CNN reports. Among the day's best:
  • Twitter (sorry, "Twttr") announced that vowels are no longer permitted in tweets, so as to facilitate
... More »

Delta Buying 49% of Virgin Atlantic

Deal will give it a larger share of NY-to-London market

(Newser) - Delta Air Lines said it will buy almost half of Virgin Atlantic for $360 million as it seeks a bigger share of the lucrative New York-to-London travel market. Delta plans to form a joint venture with Virgin Atlantic where the two airlines would share money from the flights operated under... More »

Ashton Kutcher Buys Ticket to Space

He's Virgin Galactic's 500th customer, and yes, they have to bring him back

(Newser) - Ashton Kutcher has become the latest celebrity to shell out $200,000 for a ticket off the planet. The actor has been confirmed as the 500th customer to buy a ticket to space on Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo, MSNBC reports. Other customers reportedly include Tom Hanks, Katy Perry, Brad Pitt,... More »

Celebs Got Seat at State Dinner

George Clooney, 'Downton Abbey' actors, John Legend in attendance

(Newser) - British Prime Minister David Cameron and wife Samantha were the honorees at last night's state dinner, but the real VIPs were the other 350-something people who managed to score a ticket. Among them: George Clooney (who sat next to Michelle Obama at the head table, but of course), Warren... More »

Kate Winslet Dishes on Dramatic Rescue

We saved what was important, she says of house fire

(Newser) - Kate Winslet, actress, plastic surgery disavower , and hero , has spoken out after rescuing Richard Branson’s mother from a fire at the Virgin tycoon’s Caribbean home. “I’m just so glad that everyone is safe. And this very easily could not have been the case,” she tells... More »

Kate Winslet Saves Richard Branson's Mom in Fire

Actress carries 90-year-old woman to safety

(Newser) - Titanic star Kate Winslet appears to be a good person to have around during a real emergency. All 20 guests escaped unharmed after a fire ripped through Richard Branson's luxury home on a private Caribbean island early yesterday—including the billionaire's 90-year-old mother, who was carried to safety... More »

Richard Branson Creating Lemur Island

Billionaire giving Caribbean island to endangered primates

(Newser) - Mogul Richard Branson has a spare Caribbean island that he's planning to turn over to some of the world's most endangered species. The billionaire plans to create a colony of lemurs on the undeveloped island in the British Virgin Islands. The primates are rapidly disappearing from their native... More »

Branson to Pilot Sub to Deepest Spots on Earth

Mogul plans journeys to bottom of earth in Virgin Oceanic Expeditions

(Newser) - Billionaire adventurer Richard Branson has turned his attention to the least known part of our planet: the ocean. Branson unveiled plans yesterday to send a deep-sea submarine to five of the deepest points on Earth, reports the Los Angeles Times. Fellow adventurer Chris Welsh will pilot the craft to the... More »

Space Tourism May Warm Planet

Rockets send soot into stratosphere

(Newser) - Space tourism may sound, well, out-of-this-world, but there is a good chance it will pollute this world, possibly contributing to global warming. As firms like Boeing prepare to launch space tourism businesses , a new study warns that the soot emitted by commercial rockets may get stuck in the stratosphere, notes... More »

Virgin Galactic Spacecraft Makes First Solo Flight

Private spacecraft on course to take paying passengers to space

(Newser) - The world's first manned commercial spacecraft has reached a major milestone. Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo was released from the mothership and completed its first solo glide flight over the Mojave Desert yesterday, Wired reports. The craft, which is undergoing rigorous testing ahead of plans to carry paying customers to space and... More »

Space Plane Takes First Test Flight

Mothership and spaceship flew for 3 hours in 'captive carry' test

(Newser) - Virgin Galactic’s SpaceShipTwo took to the skies for the first time yesterday over the Mojave Desert, an important step toward passenger flights in space in 2011. “This is a momentous day,” says Burt Rutan, who built the craft and its mothership for Richard Branson’s company. The... More »

On the Horizon: Space Flights for $475

Cheap, sub-orbital trips could be reality in a decade

(Newser) - Need a vacation? Aerospace engineer Burt Rutan says in the next 10 years a flight to space may be as cheap as $475. In an interview with BigThink , the space pioneer who famously designed the first plane to fly around the world without stopping explains how he, under the auspices... More »

Branson Unveils SpaceShipTwo

Billionaire unveils first tourist spacecraft

(Newser) - Virgin Galactic chief Richard Branson yesterday rolled out the vessel he hopes will soon take thousands of people into space. Some 300 clients who already paid a deposit on the entrepreneur's $200,000 space travel tickets were on hand as SpaceShipTwo was unveiled at a hangar in Mojave, Calif., CNN... More »

Virgin Soars as BA Posts Record Loss

Branson's airline doubles profits year-on-year

(Newser) - Virgin Atlantic announced today that its annual profits had nearly doubled to $109 million, while its rival British Airways posted a record annual loss of $638 million. According to the Times of London, Richard Branson's airline increased its market share and drew substantial revenue from its premium services. Virgin, which... More »

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