Richard Branson

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Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic Reaches Space

It's a big milestone for the commercial space industry

(Newser) - Virgin Galactic has officially reached space. Sir Richard Branson's company launched a spacecraft more than 50 miles into the air Thursday, not reaching orbit but successfully meeting the Federal Aviation Administration's definition of space, the Washington Post reports. It was the first spacecraft with humans aboard to be... More »

Branson: I'll Be in Space Within 'Months'

Virgin founder announces imminent test flights

(Newser) - Justin Bieber and others with a $250,000 reservation to board Virgin Galactic's tourist spaceship won't have too much longer to wait. Richard Branson tells CNBC that commercial space test flights will begin in "weeks, not months," forging a path for the Virgin founder to board... More »

Las Vegas' Hard Rock Casino-Hotel Has New Billionaire Owner

'The guitar may not survive'

(Newser) - The Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas will be overhauled over the next several months following its purchase Friday by billionaire Richard Branson, the AP reports. The property with about 1,500 rooms and suites off the Las Vegas Strip will eventually become Virgin Hotels Las Vegas. It... More »

Billionaire Branson Reveals 2 Crazy Scams—and 1 Worked

Conman impersonates him, scores $2M from a Branson friend

(Newser) - Billionaire Richard Branson thinks one conman, apparently a master impersonator, is getting rich off his name. In a blog post , the Virgin Group founder reveals two scams in the last year, one of which worked and netted the con artist $2 million. "This story sounds like it has come... More »

Branson Shares Pics From 'Unforgiving' Irma

And asks for help in rebuilding British Virgin Islands after hurricane devastation

(Newser) - Richard Branson and his staff are OK after Hurricane Irma, but much of the Caribbean is not. Fortune reports on Branson's most recent blog post , titled "Recovering From Hurricane Irma," which he notes he penned from Puerto Rico, not from the private island where he rode out... More »

Billionaire's Wine Cellar Keeps Him Safe Amid Irma

'Very, very fortunately it held firm,' writes Richard Branson from Caribbean

(Newser) - He promised to ride out Hurricane Irma on his private island in the Caribbean, and billionaire Richard Branson did just that. In a blog post , Branson said he and his crew made it through the night safely on Necker Island, his 74-acre retreat in the British Virgin Islands. "We... More »

This Billionaire Isn't Moving for Irma

Richard Branson has weathered 3 hurricanes on his private island

(Newser) - With the most powerful Atlantic hurricane ever recorded battering the Caribbean, Business Insider reports that at least one billionaire is staying put. As Irma was closing in on Tuesday, Virgin Group CEO Richard Branson declared he would hunker down on his private island, the Telegraph reports. "I will be... More »

Obama Learns to Kitesurf

On vacation on Richard Branson's Necker Island

(Newser) - The Obamas are relaxing post-White House at Necker Island, the luxury Caribbean island owned by Virgin founder Richard Branson. Barack Obama's latest vacation activity? Learning to kitesurf, Time reports. On his blog , Branson notes that Obama wasn't allowed to enjoy watersports, which he previously loved, while president. As... More »

11 Stars Who Own Private Islands

Must be nice

(Newser) - It's no surprise for a celebrity to own a fancy car or a huge mansion—but these 23 celebrities rounded up by Ranker kick it up a notch or two: They own private islands. A sampling:
  1. Johnny Depp: He owns a 45-acre island in the Caribbean, and seems to
... More »

Virgin Galactic Rolls Out New Space Tourism Craft

A deadly accident destroyed its predecessor

(Newser) - Virgin Galactic rolled out a new version of its SpaceShipTwo space tourism rocket Friday as it prepares to return to flight testing for the first time since a 2014 accident destroyed the original craft , killing a pilot and setting back the nascent industry. A Land Rover with Virgin Galactic founder... More »

52 Weeks of Parental Leave Now Exists. Paid

For a very select group of employees at one of Richard Branson's subsidiaries

(Newser) - Richard Branson has come up with a parental leave policy that Michelle Duggar could have retired on probably sometime in the last century: 52 weeks of leave at 100% pay, reports TheStreet . "If you take care of your employees, they will take care of your business," says Branson... More »

The Sex Pistols' New Venture Is ... Not So Rebellious

Band will be featured on credit cards

(Newser) - From punk rock icons to ... credit card hawkers? Yes, indeed, the Sex Pistols will be helping a UK bank sell its credit cards, the Guardian reports. The band's name and album artwork will appear on a series of cards for Virgin Money, the bank founded by Sir Richard Branson,... More »

Did Plant Turn Down $795M to Reunite Led Zeppelin?

That's what tabloid sources say, but his rep denies it

(Newser) - We all know Robert Plant is pretty determined not to get the band back together—but is he so determined that he turned down a $795 million offer to reunite Led Zeppelin? That's what "industry sources" told the Mirror , though Plant's rep quickly shot down the story.... More »

Branson: I'll Still Be on Virgin's First Spaceflight

Dangers involved are 'worth it'

(Newser) - The crash of Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo on Friday has unsurprisingly failed to deter Richard Branson: He'll still be on his company's first flight to space, he tells CNN. "There is no way I would ask others to go on a Virgin Galactic flight if I didn'... More »

Virgin Galactic Spacecraft Was Testing New Fuel

NTSB begins investigation as Richard Branson arrives in Mojave

(Newser) - The National Transportation Safety Board has taken the lead in trying to figure out what doomed Virgin Galactic's SpaceShipTwo yesterday , and the Los Angeles Times notes that it's a milestone of sorts in the new world of commercial space travel. This marks the first time the NTSB has... More »

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 »

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 »

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