According to WSJ’s report, Sir Richard Branson has sold around $300 million worth of shares in Virgin Galactic Holdings Inc SPCE to raise funds for other parts of his pandemic-hit global business.
- Virgin Group sold 10,416,000 shares on Thursday, reducing the stake to 18%.
- Branson’s business in airlines, cruise ships, hotels, and gyms has been badly hit by the pandemic-related economic slowdown.
- Virgin Group currently owns 51% of the airline, with the US-based Delta Air Lines owning the rest.
- In April, the airline reported a pretax loss after passenger numbers dropped by 80%.
- Virgin Atlantic is exploring a possible listing on the London stock market to raise money for its airline business.
- The company survived the pandemic with a rescue of $2.08 billion between September 2020 and March 2021. However, Virgin Galactic Holdings and satellite-launch company Virgin Orbit are performing well.
- Last month Branson successfully flew into space as a passenger on the Unity 22. The flight was the fourth crewed trip by the company and another step in taking its 600 future astronauts to space. Each will pay $200,000 to $250,000 for a seat on the spacecraft.
- In May, Virgin Group sold out shares in Virgin Galactic to raise money for the wider business. According to the company, Virgin Group continues to be the largest single shareholder in Virgin Galactic.
- The pandemic resulted in a loss for the company of 659 million pounds for 2020.
Photo: Virgin Galactic visits the New York Stock Exchange to celebrate its listing. Richard Branson rings The First Trade Bell.
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