Published: Fri, October 13, 2017
Economy | By Shawn Conner

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

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

Virgin Group founder Richard Branson announced earlier today that Virgin Group is investing in Hyperloop One, which recently acquired additional funding from investors last month.

Branson, a British billionaire with investments in retail, music and airlines, said he believes in the new system, which aims to deliver transport at near-supersonic speeds in sealed tubes. "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 held its latest test run of a transport pod in a tube in late July in the Nevada desert.

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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"Ever since our creation, Virgin has been known for disruption and investing in innovative companies", the entrepreneur writes.

Hyperloop One was originally conceptualized by Elon Musk.

So Hyperloop One may be the furthest along in developing the futuristic transportation network, but it still has a long way to go.

The startup had raised more than $200 million prior to Tuesday's announcement.

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The amount of Virgin Group's investment was not disclosed.

The Hyperloop technology is now in the early stages of commercialization after a successful first full-scale systems test was conducted. "Hyperloop technology has been explicitly open-sourced and others have been encouraged to take the ideas and further develop them".

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.

But Hyperloop One has not been without controversy. In August this year Hyperloop One successfully managed to fire a pod at 192mph.

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Meanwhile, Musk is now working part-time on a similar project, called The Boring Company.

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