Life at 30,000 feet: Richard Branson on TED.com

Posted by: Tedstaff

When Richard Branson was at school, his headmaster predicted he would wind up either a millionaire or in jail. Since then, he’s done both. He talks to TED’s Chris Anderson about the ups and the downs of his career, from his multibillionaire success to his multiple near-death experiences, from Virgin’s line of spacecraft to the failure of the Virgin condom. He also reveals some of his (very surprising) motivations. (Recorded March 2007 in Monterey, California. Duration: 30:44.)

Watch Richard Branson’s talk on TED.com, where you can download it, rate it, comment on it and find other talks and performances.

Read more about Richard Branson on TED.com.

Comments (2)

  • Frank Alec commented on Feb 29 2008

    Hey Mr. Branson,
    I have an idea of what can be done. It will work and need no alterations for the first 10 years. I think it’s cool, what you are about to find. Don’t be afraid.

  • TEDBlog Reader commented on Nov 15 2007


    I do not know if Richard Branson will read this, but I hope this is true.

    He has implemented Virgin Challenge which includes several Green Aware people, including Al Gore.

    I chose not to enter the competition on the basis that it will take too long to implement.
    I sent a proposal to Virgin Earth (Eva Morales) of a very simple design I conceived in 1996, which is a WAVE ELECTRICITY GENERATOR. For whatever reason, Virgin Fuels rejected pursuing my proposal.

    My design is simple and global, and is powerful.
    It can replace ALL of the worlds current electricity plants in an extremely short time span.
    It has less than 20 moving parts (excluding the generator) and can be manufactured in most countries in the world simultaneously. It is cheap to create (relative to existing power plants) and is 100% resource free. It creates zero by-products of any kind and is low in maintenance.

    John Doerr spoke of Wall Marts green policy of diminishing their energy consumption, which in effect is treating the symptoms as opposed to curing the disease.

    By creating co2 free electricity, all of the existing energy wasteful refrigeration and lighting systems instantly become green.

    So, Richard, if you get to read this, let me waste only 10 minutes of your time to explain the machine to you. You are fully aware of how critical the global climate crisis is, and the greatest wealth we can conceive is air for our grand children at tolerable temperatures.

    Lance Blumenthal.