Richard Branson recalls the event that “changed his life” and gave birth to the Virgin brand.
RICHARD BRANSON has unveiled the album that over 50 years ago “kickstarted the Virgin brand.”
Richard Branson epitomizes the affluent British businessman. He has amassed a fortune through his several commercial activities under the Virgin Group banner.
Branson recently stated that one album was the catalyst for his empire’s growth.
“Virgin Records released the album that changed my life and launched the Virgin brand 48 years ago,” Branson remarked.
“That album was Tubular Bells by Mike Oldfield, a hauntingly beautiful album that still moves me today.
“After opening our first Virgin record store in London, we scraped together some cash and bought a dilapidated country mansion, which we transformed into The Manor, a recording studio.
He explained, “One day, an engineer from The Manor called me and said he’d heard this wonderful instrumental demo tape by a teenager named Mike Oldfield.”
“We sent out submissions to all of the major labels, and Mike was turned down after rejection after rejection. As a result, we decided to start our own record label to release this album.
“It was a massive risk because it was so distinct from anything else that had come before it, and at the time, there was no other music like it.”
“Tubular Bells went on to become one of the best-selling records of the 1970s,” Branson continued.
“With the signings of the Sex Pistols and the Rolling Stones, Virgin became the world’s biggest independent label.”
“Virgin Record’s success aided the establishment of other firms like Virgin Atlantic, and the brand expanded into many other industries throughout the world from there,” he continued.
The Virgin Group now owns and operates over 400 businesses in a number of industries.
Branson, a 71-year-old Londoner from Blackheath, is at the helm of Virgin, a company that has developed rapidly over time.
In 1972, Branson founded the Virgin Records and eventually Virgin Megastores record store business.
In the 1980s, the Virgin Records record label rose in popularity, and Branson ventured into the airline industry with the founding of Virgin Atlantic.
After British Rail was privatized in 1997, Branson continued his expansion into the travel business by forming the Virgin Rail Group.
Virgin Galactic, his most ambitious enterprise, was formed in 2004 with the goal of developing commercial spacecraft.
Branson traveled to the edge of space on a Virgin Galactic test mission in July of this year, suggesting that commercial spaceflight is possible. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”