FACTBOX-Richard Branson: Daredevil billionaire entrepreneur soars into space


July 11 (Reuters) – Flaming British entrepreneur Richard Branson prepares to soar into space on a test flight on Sunday by his Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc, defeating fellow billionaire astronaut and founder of ‘Amazon.com Jeff Bezos about a week.

Virgin Galactic’s VSS Unity rocket plane launches over the New Mexico desert will mark the space tourism company’s first test mission beyond Earth’s atmosphere to carry a full complement of travelers space.

From building a conglomerate to flying through space, here’s a summary of Branson’s life and business:

1950: Birth on July 18 in the United Kingdom of Eve, flight attendant at British South American Airways and Ted Branson, former cavalry officer

1960s: Starts first business at age 15, student magazine, drops out of Stowe School

1970: Creation of the first Virgin company, a mail order company. Virgin Group now operates more than 40 companies in five industries and five continents

1973: Launches the Virgin Records label which will subsequently represent the Sex Pistols, the Rolling Stones, Janet Jackson, the Smashing Pumpkins and the Spice Girls

1978: buys Necker Island in the Caribbean for $ 180,000 on condition that he builds a resort within four years

1984: Launch of Virgin Atlantic Airlines

1985: makes his first attempt to break into the record books: attempts to make the fastest boat crossing the Atlantic, but capsizes 140 miles (225.31 km) off the coast of Britain

1992: sells Virgin Records to Thorn EMI for $ 1 billion

1998: publishes his first autobiography, “Losing My Virginity”, posing naked on the front page of the tabloid Sun to promote it

1999: Launches Virgin Mobile phone service in the UK, which then expands to Australia, US and Canada

2000: Receives the title of knight for services to entrepreneurship, deploys the activities of Virgin Cars, Virgin Student, Virginmoney.com, Virgin Wines and Virgin Energy

2004: Launches the first commercial space tourism company – Virgin Galactic

2013: Virgin Galactic’s six-passenger ship called VSS Enterprise makes its first powered flight

2014: Virgin Galactic spacecraft crashes during test flight, killing one pilot and injuring the other

2021: Virgin Galactic receives approval from the US aviation safety regulator to transport people into space. He announces that Branson, worth around $ 6 billion according to Forbes, will fly to the far reaches of space during the company’s test flight on July 11.

Report by Akanksha Rana in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Daniel Wallis


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