Sir Richard Charles Branson is a prominent, English business magnate, investor, and philanthropist. He is best known for founding the Virgin Atlantic Group in the 1970s, which controls over 400 companies in various industries. His portfolio has since grown to hundreds of companies globally. In recent years, there have been rumors that this wealthy businessman has been so successful, not only because of the Virgin Group but because of his investment in the cryptocurrency market.
Many have claimed that Richard Branson has endorsed Bitcoin, among other decentralized currencies publicly, and has invested a substantial amount of wealth in these markets.
We decided to investigate these claims and find out whether this billionaire businessman has in fact invested in the world of cryptocurrencies.
Some of Richard Branson’s Investments
Some of the companies Richard Branson owns include airlines, wireless communications, radio stations, hotels, health clubs, financial services businesses, the nightclub Heaven, renewable technologies, a Formula One Team, and even a space tourism company. In 2020, Richard Branson’s net worth stood at an estimated $4 billion, according to Forbes.
Branson founded his first magazine at 16, called Student, where he focused on interviewing celebrities and sold almost $8, 000 worth of advertising for the first issue. He then dropped out of school to promote his magazine and in 1969, he started a mail-order record business that used the magazine offices as a head office. He then only had a team of 20 employees and that is when the new business ‘Virgin’ started.
In media reports, Branson has often attributed his success to luck, speed, and hard work. He has published many books, in which he has cited that his daredevil ideas, originality, willingness to buck norms, and persistence have caused him to gain major successes. Branson has even been named the United Kingdom’s dream boss.
Is it true that Richard Branson endorsed Bitcoin?
It is true that Richard Branson has been very vocal about cryptocurrency trading in the media. However, not all of this is positive. Recently, Branson has spoken out on CNBC, stating that scammers are targeting people using his identity and fake endorsements to gain credibility for their products, especially the binary trading market. Branson has even put together a legal team to deal with media outlets who are using his name in cryptocurrency-related scams. Although Branson has expressed his opinion about Bitcoin and cryptocurrency-related matters, we have not found any evidence that suggests that the billionaire has indeed invested in Bitcoin or publicly endorsed it the cryptocurrency as lucrative.
Although he has stated that:
“There may be other currencies like it that may be even better. But in the meantime, there’s a big industry around Bitcoin. — People have made fortunes off Bitcoin, some have lost money. It is volatile, but people make money off of volatility too.” [Source: Bitcoin.com]
Many loyal followers of the billionaire businessman may have noticed that his opinion when it comes to cryptocurrency is very reserved.
Why Are Media Outlets Spreading These Rumours?
There are some online platforms that have been publishing these stories to sensitize the public and alert individuals of scammers. However, there have been a few affiliate marketers whose only interest is to hype the story as aggressively as possible, while benefiting from paid ads, clicks, and sign-up commissions that are common with viral news. This type of rumor is common on gossip and fake news sites.
A billionaire businessman endorsing bitcoin or cryptocurrency would automatically gain popularity and credibility globally. This is also the intent behind the generation of these fake news stories.
How to Spot a Fake News Story
Fake news is nothing new. But these stories can reach more people, faster via social media than what good old-fashioned viral emails could accomplish in years past.
Here’s how you can spot a fake news story:
- Consider the source
- Read beyond the headline
- Check the author
- Check the date
- Check the evidence
- Check the links
Our review finds no evidence that Richard Branson has invested or endorsed Bitcoin or related trading technologies. He has never approved to have invested in any trading technology, neither in Bitcoin or any other cryptocurrency or coin.