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A Teacher Predicted He’d End Up A Criminal Or A Millionaire. Instead Richard Branson Became An Intergalactic Multi-Billionaire

Richard Branson started his first business in the basement of a church and now he’s developing space stations. This is his transformation from a struggling student to a multibillionaire with global influence.

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“From small beginnings come great things” was never more exemplified than in the career of entrepreneur Richard Branson. Branson had trouble in school, but he promised himself he would succeed by whatever means necessary.

How well did your determination to succeed work out? Richard Branson has developed into one of the richest and most influential persons in the world over the past 45 years thanks to his numerous lucrative ventures across a wide range of markets. Richard is also the ninth richest individual in the UK with a personal net worth of $6 billion.

He’s been knighted, set three world records, won multiple aviation awards, a handful of humanitarian honors, and even an honorary Grammy Award.

Richard Branson - Life Story
Richard Branson – /Life StoryEthan Miller/Getty Images

Early Life

On July 18, 1950, Richard Branson was born in Blackheath, London, England. He was the oldest kid in a loving, artistic family, and his dyslexia had a negative impact on his academic success. Richard’s parents continued to be very encouraging and supportive despite his subpar academic performance.

Richard’s confidence and life would be significantly impacted by this unwavering faith in his potential and skills. Ironically, the headmaster had predicted that Richard would either become wealthy or go to prison just before he graduated from high school. Instead of the former, he chose to concentrate his energies on the latter, and he quickly started his own record company out of the church basement in his community.

Virgin Records

He started promoting the selling of albums in The Student Magazine as its Editor-in-Chief. His little record shop became an overnight hit, and because he had lesser overhead than the big record shops in London, he could offer his copies for less money. The name Virgin was given to his record label in honor of the fact that none of the partners had much prior business or life experience.

Richard was able to open a retail store on Oxford Street in 1971 because to the company’s success. He formally established his own record company, Virgin Records, the following year. He acquired a country mansion, renovated it, and added a recording studio. He started signing bands that other labels were hesitant to sign because they seemed too edgy or past their peak because he was not one to back down from a risk. The Sex Pistols, Faust, Can, and Culture Club were just a few of the bands on this list. His almost uncanny ability to predict which bands would be both divisive and successful immediately established Virgin Records as a major player.

Success

Next, Richard expanded into owning nightclubs, while simultaneously taking Virgin Records global. He started Virgin Vision in 1983 after realizing how music was entwined with cinema and television. Virgin Communications will later incorporate Virgin Vision, a division for the distribution of movies and videos. In the same year, he established Virgin Games, entering the market for video games at a time when it was just getting started.

Virgin Atlantic

After getting his airline off the ground, he went back to his musical roots and started “Music Box,” a 24-hour satellite music program. He subsequently founded his own travel company, Virgin Holidays. The remainder of the 1980s were devoted to growing the record label’s footprint and establishing a number of new businesses, such as Virgin Classics, Virgin Airship & Balloon Company, and Virgin Broadcasting. He began his American career by establishing a recording studio in Los Angeles.

Early 1990s saw a continuation of expansion but with some setbacks. Virgin Airlines was having trouble, but Virgin Records was growing rapidly and entering the Asian market in Japan and starting its own radio station. British Airways consistently fought Virgin Airlines in the early 1990s. The attacks were so ugly, that it was eventually discovered that British Airways was hacking Virgin Atlantic’s computer systems, stealing customers, and spreading inaccurate news about the company. In the end, Branson and the airline were given a $1 million fine from British Airways. Richard distributed the funds to his employees. Despite the fact that British Airways was shown to be intentionally undermining Virgin Atlantic, the harm to the Virgin brand had already been done.

Branson was compelled to sell Virgin Records in an effort to save the faltering airline. The choice was agonizing. All of his other enterprises, nevertheless, continued to operate. And not simply floating. Branson launched an extraordinary number of new businesses after selling Virgin Records. He launched Virgin Direct Personal Financial Services, Virgin Express, Virgin Brides, Virgin Trains, Virgin Cosmetics, Virgin Mobile, Virgin Active, Virgin Blue, Virgin Energy, Virgin Cars, Virgin Galactic, Virgin Health Bank, Virgin Media, Virgin America, Virgin Fuel, Virgin Money, Virgin Healthcare, Virgin Racing, and Virgin Produced. He is currently involved with a wide range of fields, including biofuel, space research, makeup, racing, telecommunications, and the creation of films and television. Midway through the 1990s, he even started a brand-new record label called V2.

Virgin Galactic

Richard and five other astronauts will launch on Virgin Galactic’s inaugural space flight on July 11, 2021.

Philanthropy

In addition to his business endeavors, Richard has successfully launched a number of humanitarian efforts using the same tried-and-true techniques. He established the non-profit foundation Virgin Unite, and together with it, they opened the Branson School on Entrepreneurship in South Africa. He also provides a significant portion of the funding for The Elders, a group of independent world leaders dedicated to peacefully resolving international disputes. Additionally, he has signed the Global Zero Declaration, a non-profit organization committed to the global abolition of nuclear weapons. He has participated in hunger strikes, hosted environmental symposiums at his home, and served as a celebrity fundraiser for a range of humanitarian causes. Most notably, Richard Branson joined Warren Buffett and Bill Gates in The Giving Pledge in February 2013. By doing this, Branson is promising to donate at least half of his money, either during his lifetime or after his passing.

Necker Island

It is amazing that Richard Branson finds time to sleep given how busy his life is. However, we do know that when Richard does relax, it will presumably be in one of the many opulent homes spread out over the globe. Necker Island, a 74 acre private estate in the British Virgin Islands, is possibly his most well-known property. In 1978, when he learned the islands were up for sale, Branson made a lowball offer of $160,000. The bid was rejected because the islands’ estimated $5 million valuation at the time was too low. The owner of the islands experienced a severe financial issue within a short period of time and eventually decided to accept Richard’s offer of $280,000. Richard spent the following three years and $10 million transforming the desolate islands into the pinnacle of luxury retreats. Although the island is currently valued at more than $200 million, it is likely priceless. The island is also technically Sir Richard’s primary residence for tax purposes.

Richard Branson clearly seems to have discovered the blueprint for success across a multitude of industries and ventures. Furthermore, he has absolutely no symptoms of slowing down any time soon, which is astounding. His high school headmaster’s prognosis turned out to be just half accurate. The prediction’s lone flaw is that Branson never turned into a millionaire or a felon. He nearly five-folded his wealth and became a billionaire! Regardless of whether he chose to use his drive and leadership abilities for good or bad, he was destined to accomplish great things. He seems to have focused on employing them in a variety of constructive ways, which is fortunate for all of us. Fast forward a few decades, and the man who started with a basement record store, is now funding the development of a space station.

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