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etvfutures.com December 17, 2017


Richard Branson Invests in Hyperloop One

12 October 2017, 07:33 | Lucia Cruz

Richard Branson's Virgin Group just invested in Hyperloop One, the crazy superfast transport idea of Elon Musk

Hyperloop One raised an $85 million round at a valuation that tops $700 million

Branson, who described the endeavor as the world's most revolutionary train service, said that as a train owner (his company owns a train network in the United Kingdom in addition to an airline and other ventures), he felt this is something he wants to be able to operate.

Richard Branson's Virgin Group is investing in Hyperloop One, a tech startup working to build a new high-speed transportation system. And with that, the company's rebranding to a not-clunky-whatsoever-name: Virgin Hyperloop One.

The hyperloop works by propelling pods through tubes using magnets reaching speeds akin to those of airplanes.

Sir Richard has led an $85m (£65m) investment in Hyperloop One, a California-based company that is the first to successfully test the high-speed magnetic levitation technology.

Trains: Hyperloop floats above the surface of the tube. With a goal of the pods traveling as high as 700 miles per hour, it could reduce the travel time between Austin and Dallas to around 20 minutes.

"From our airlines to our trains to our spaceline, we have always been passionate about innovation in transport too, especially the development of technology that could transform people's lives", Branson said in a statement.

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In a post on his website, Branson said he aimed to turn it into a "global passenger service" which could complete the 332-mile journey between the Scottish and United Kingdom capitals, via Manchester, in under an hour.

'This is just the latest example'.

"After visiting Hyperloop One's test site in Nevada and meeting its leadership team this past summer, I am convinced this groundbreaking technology will change transportation as we know it and dramatically cut journey times", said Branson.

In an interview with CNBC, Branson said that commercial Hyperloop could be launched in two to four years, if "governments move quickly".

One of Hyperloop One's co-founders, head of engineering Josh Giegel, previously worked for Branson at his Virgin Galactic space venture.



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