Early days Richard Branson was born on 18 July 1950 in South London, the son of barrister Edward James Branson and Eve Branson. Branson had poor academic records which contrasted with excellent performance in sports, especially swimming. “Sent to a different school, Branson was initially expelled for his nocturnal visits with the headmaster’s daughter. But, after writing a fake suicide note, Branson got the expulsion overturned. Back in school, Branson set up Student Magazine at the age of 16 and opened the Student Advisory Centre a year later, which was a charity to help young people. After his first issue of Student, the headmaster of Branson’s school wrote a note saying, “Congratulations, Branson. I predict you will either go to prison or become a millionaire.” In the next forty years, Branson would go on to prove his headmaster right on both counts.
Richard Branson Not good in education, Dyslexic Quit school at the age of 16 Fastest to cross the Atlantic ocean in a boat called Atlantic Challenger Opened studio to let artists work at night Virgin Atlantic- 1st plane crash Came from a hot air balloon for marriage Galactic- Travel in space, on moon Owns an island
CAREER His business career began at the age of 15 when he published the magazine called "Student“ Student advisory centre for charity to help youngsters He went on to set up a mail-order business in 1970 in the vinyl record business which, in 1972, became a chain of record stores called Virgin Records, later known as Virgin Megastores
1968This is where it allbegan. Richardsfirst ventureStudent magazinewent into print
1971The first VirginRecord Shop opensin Oxford Street,London
1973The Virgin recordlabel is launchedand the VirginMusic Publishingoperation isestablished in theUK. Mike Oldfieldreleases TubularBells, one of thebiggest sellingalbums of thedecade and thesoundtrack to TheExorcist..
1993Virgin Radio hitsthe airwaves as theUKs first national,commercial rockmusic station.1994Virgin Retailbecomes the UKslargest musicretaile
1996Virgin Expressairline takes offVirgin Netlaunches as aninternet serviceprovider...Virgin Bridesopens its doors
1997Virgin Trains winsthe 15 yearfranchise for theIntercity WestCoast line
2000Nine new companies arelaunched:Virginmoney.com (afinancial servicessupermarket); VirginTravelstore (travel agency);Virgin Student (a studentcommunity website andmarketing agency); VirginEnergy (gas and electricitysales) V.Shop (a new retailconcept replacing the Pricebrand); Virgin Cars; VirginWines; Virgin MobileAustralia; Virgin Blue (lowcost airline in Australiawhich goes on to be thefastest-growing companyin Virgins history
And some more things… 1993- Doctor of Technology from Loughborough University 2004- Space tourism company, Virgin Galactic Became Sir Richard Branson when he was knighted by the Queen in 1999 for "services to entrepreneurship“
Virgin Group More than 300 companies Businesses in sectors ranging from mobile telephony to transportation, travel, financial services, media, music and fitness 50, 000 employees Existence in 30 countries Virgin stands for value for money, quality, innovation, fun and a sense of competitive challenge Richard Branson was listed in the Forbes 2008 list of billionaires with a net worth of approximately $7.9 billion USD
While starting a new venture… hard research and analysis Go in customers shoes an opportunity for restructuring a market and creating competitive advantage? What are the competitors doing? How can we add value? Is there an appropriate trade-off between risk and reward? reate partnerships with others to combine industry specific skills, knowledge, and operational expertise
The Rise Of Virgin Group Virgin, a leading branded venture capital organization, is one of the worlds most recognized and respected brands. Virgin stands for value for money, quality, innovation, fun and a sense of competitive challenge. The Virgin brand grew rapidly during the 1980s. He was known for running close to the edge in terms of his financing model and risked everything with Virgin Records to set up Virgin Atlantic Airways. due to the capital requirements his bankers forced him to sell Virgin Records to hold onto Virgin Atlantic Airways but he then went on to build the Virgin brand into diverse areas such as bridal gear and railways.
Key points to success hard research and analysis Questions:- Restructuring a market and creating competitive advantage? What are the competitors doing? Is the customer confused or badly served? Is this an opportunity for building the Virgin brand? Can we add value? Will it interact with our other businesses? Is there an appropriate trade-off between risk and reward? Intelligent people are more important than money
LESSONS LEARNT FROM BRANSON Be A Good Leader Build A Powerful Brand Keep Flying High Break Records Have Fun
LINKS and REFERENCE Virgin.Com Speaker on Virgin Values Richard Bransons Virgin Success Branson, Sir Richard. Losing my virginity — The autobiography, 2005, ISBN 0-7535-1020-0 Bower, Tom. Branson, 2001 Branson, Sir Richard. Screw it, lets do it, 2006 Guardian Newspaper Interview Askmen.com feature on Richard Branson Virgin Corporate Website