Hyperloop One Is Now 'Virgin Hyperloop One' Thanks to Richard Branson's Investment

Gwen Vasquez
October 13, 2017

In its announcement today, Virgin Hyperloop One says that it "continues to see a growing demand from governments and the private sector around the world".

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. Now Virgin CEO Richard Branson is looking to own the next leap forward in human transportation.

Richard Branson, the billionaire founder of the Virgin Group, has announced an investment in Hyperloop One - which will now be rebranded Virgin Hyperloop One.

In a blog post on Thursday, Branson said: "We're incredibly excited about the technology behind Virgin Hyperloop One and the way it could transform passengers' lives".

The Hyperloop is a nascent transportation system that works by shooting pods through a vacuumed-sealed tube at speeds that experts say could reach 700 miles per hour.

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The technology for Hyperloop One is now in the early stages of the commercialisation phase after the successful completion of the world's first full scale hyperloop systems test at the DevLoop site outside Las Vegas. The air-tight tubes need to be closer to true vacuum, the maglev acceleration needs to increase which will require more power, and protecting hyperloop tracks from environmental factors such as earthquakes is still a major concern.

Branson and his company, Virgin Group, are investing an undisclosed sum in the startup to kick off a new global partnership. As an example of the high-speed transportation offered by Hyperloop, the project expects the travel time from Edinburgh to London to be 50 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.

Hyperloop One Chairman Shervin Pishevar told CNBC that with Branson on board, the company will be able to accelerate the commercialization process and also design products with the consumer in mind.

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