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Virgin Hyperloop One recruits Richard Branson, targets Middle East

Virgin Hyperloop One has named Richard Branson as its chairman and raised an additional $50m of funding with an investment from Dubai-based DP World, as it targets the Middle East as a key market

The company says it has achieved test speeds of 387kmph in its third phase of trials.
The company says it has achieved test speeds of 387kmph in its third phase of trials.

Virgin Hyperloop One has named Richard Branson as its chairman and raised an additional $50m of funding with an investment from Dubai-based DP World, as it targets the Middle East as a key market for its passenger and cargo transport systems.

The company, which claims to be the first to have built a full-scale hyperloop system, says it has achieved test speeds of 387kmph in its third phase of trials.

Branson joined the Virgin Hyperloop One board of directors in October 2017 after Virgin Group invested in the company and formed a global strategic partnership. “I am excited by the latest developments at Virgin Hyperloop One and delighted to be its new chairman,” said Branson, founder of the Virgin Group.

READ: Virgin Group invests in US's Hyperloop One

“The recent investment by our partners Caspian Venture Capital and DP World sets up the company to pursue opportunities in key markets in the Middle East, Europe, and Russia as it develops game-changing and innovative passenger and cargo ground transport systems.”

The latest investment round brings the total financing raised by Virgin Hyperloop One to $295m.

Virgin Hyperloop One’s CEO Rob Lloyd said: “We continue to see extremely strong interest from world leaders globally looking to embrace hyperloop to address critical infrastructure challenges. Our focus in 2018 will be on accelerating commercial agreements for both passenger and cargo projects.”

A Virgin Hyperloop One pod lifts above its track using magnetic levitation and glides at airline speeds for long distances due to ultra-low aerodynamic drag.

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Construction Week - Issue 733
Mar 14, 2019