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Virgin Group Ltd.
FoundedFebruary 1970; 54 years ago (1970-02)
FoundersSir Richard Branson
Nik Powell
United Kingdom
Area served
Key people
Sir Richard Branson
Peter Norris
Josh Bayliss (CEO)[1]
Commercial aviation
Commercial spaceflight
Consumer electronics
Health care
Mobile Phones
RevenueIncrease £19.5 billion (2016)[1]
Number of employees
Approximately 71,000

Virgin Group Ltd. is a British Multinational corporation venture capital Conglomerate founded by entrepreneurs Sir Richard Branson and Nik Powell.

Virgin Group's date of incorporation is listed as 1989 by Companies House, who class it as a holding company; however Virgin's business and trading activities date to the 1970s. The net worth of Virgin Group was estimated at £5-5.5 billion as of November 2014.

Name (Virgin)[]

The brand name "Virgin" arose when Richard Branson and Nik Powell formed a record shop. They considered themselves virgins in business.[2] Branson has described the "V" in the logo as an expressive tick, representing the Virgin seal of approval.[2]

Corporate affairs[]

Virgin Group has its headquarters at The Battleship Building in the Paddington district of the City of Westminster.[3] Previously it was in The School House in the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham.[4]

The Virgin Group of companies have a complex structure that contains elements of a generic conglomerate, a Keiretsu and sometimes simply licences its brand. Examples of licensing are Virgin Records (now owned by Universal Music Group) and Virgin Media (now owned by Liberty Global).

In mid-May 2013, the Virgin Group expressed its intention to seek out opportunities in Australia's healthcare industry to consolidate on the Group's Australian fitness centers. The Group also owns over 100 National Health Service (NHS) services in the United Kingdom and the healthcare division of medical services group Assura after entering the British healthcare industry in 2011.[5]

Subsidiaries and investments[]

Company Ownership Sector
V Festival 100% Entertainment
Virgin Active 20% Health
Virgin Atlantic 51% Travel
Virgin Australia Holdings 10%
Virgin Books 10% Publishing
Virgin Care 100% Health
Virgin Connect 100% Media
Virgin Experience Days 100% Entertainment
Virgin Galactic 100% Aerospace
Virgin Green Fund 100% Energy
Virgin Health Bank 100% Health
Virgin HealthMiles 100% Business Services
Virgin Holidays 100% Travel
Virgin Hotels 100% Hospitality
Virgin Limited Edition 100%
Limobike 100% Travel
Virgin Megastores 100% Retail
Virgin Mobile 100% Communications
Virgin Money 34%[6] Banking
Virgin Oceanic Japan
Virgin Racing 100% Entertainment
Virgin Radio 100% Entertainment
Virgin Rail Group 51% Travel
Virgin Sports 1% Sports
Virgin Trains East Coast 10% Travel
Virgin Unite 100% Charity
Virgin Startup 100% Charity
Virgin Vacations 100% Travel
Virgin Voucher 100% Retail
Virgin Voyages 100% Travel
Further information: List of Richard Branson's business ventures

Formerly owned ventures[]

  • Absolute Radio — formerly Virgin Radio UK, rebranded in 2008
  • Air NigeriaNigerian national airline launched as Virgin Nigeria, shares sold in 2010
  • Liquid Comics — comic book producer formerly known as Virgin Comics - sold to management in 2008
  • Vie at Home — cosmetics retailer formerly known as Virgin Vie, sold to management in 2009
  • Virgin America - North American airline, sold to Alaska Air Group on 14, Dec 2016
  • Virgin Brides — retailer specialising in bridal wear
  • Virgin Cars — online car retailer, ceased trading in 2005
  • Virgin Charter — online marketplace of private aircraft seat bookings
  • Virgin Cinemas — sold to UGC in 1999
  • Virgin Digital Help — technical support
  • Virgin Drinks — drink manufacturer
    • Virgin Cola — carbonated cola soft drink
    • Virgin Vodka — alcoholic beverage
    • v-Mix — spirit mixers
  • Virgin Electronics — electronics retailer
  • Virgin Energy — joint venture energy provider, sold to EDF Energy
  • Virgin Express — airline based in Brussels, merged with SN Brussels Airlines in 2006 to form Brussels Airlines
  • V Festival — an Australian version of the V Festival
  • Virgin Festival — a North American version of the V Festival
  • Virgin Films — film production company
  • Virgin Games — sold to Gamesys in 2013
  • Virgin Interactive — closed in 2003
  • Virgin Limousines — a former limousine service that operated mostly in the USA and Canada. It operated for 14 years, until November 2010.
  • Virgin Media (including Virgin Mobile UK) — UK Cable TV, broadband internet and Fixed and Mobile telephony provider - bought by Liberty Global
  • Virgin Mobile Australia — mobile phone service provider in Australia - shares sold to Optus in 2006
  • Virgin Mobile Canada — mobile phone service provider in Canada - shares sold to Bell Mobility in 2009
  • Virgin Mobile France — mobile phone service provider in France - shares sold to Numericable-SFR in 2014
  • Virgin Mobile India — mobile phone service provider in India - shares sold to Tata Teleservices in 2015
  • Virgin Mobile USA — mobile phone service provider in the USA - shares sold to Sprint Corporation in 2009
  • Virgin Money Australia — sold to Bank of Queensland
  • Virgin Money US — sold in 2010
  • Virgin One account — shareholding sold to co-owner (RBS) in 2003
  • Virgin Sun Airlines — scheduled and charter airline, closed in 2001
  • Virgin Trains ExpressCoach — former operator of inter-city bus & coach services
  • Virgin CrossCountry — former operator of the Cross Country railway franchise in the United Kingdom, services transferred to Arriva in 2007 (51%)
  • Virgin EMI Records - Soundtrack label - owned by Universal Music Group
  • Virgin RacingFormula One motor racing team
  • Virginware — clothing retailer
  • Virgin Wines — online wine market, sold to Direct Wines in 2005


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "About us". Retrieved 18 January 2015.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Richard Branson. Losing My Virginity. ISBN 1-8522-7684-3.[page needed]
  3. "Our company information." Virgin Group. Retrieved on 14 October 2013. "The Battleship Building, 179 Harrow Road, London W2 6NB"
  4. "Our company information." Virgin Group. Retrieved on 14 January 2009. "The School House 50 Brook Green London, W6 7RR England"
  5. Damon Kitney (20 May 2013). "Virgin Group eyes slice of Australia's $65bn healthcare market". The Australian. Retrieved 20 May 2013.
  6. Armstrong, Ashley (13 November 2014). "Virgin Money float triggers £50m payment to George Osborne's coffers". The Telegraph. Retrieved 19 May 2015.

External links[]

  • Business data for Virgin Group Ltd.:

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