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VI’s newest billionaire citizen: Richard C.N. Branson

- Billionaire Branson granted British Overseas Territories Citizenship after officially calling VI home since 2006
When 124 persons took the oath to become British Overseas citizens of the Virgin Islands (VI) in the week of July 14, 2023, a familiar name Sir Richard N. Branson was amongst those listed according to information released by the VI Government. Photo: Internet Source
Richard C.N. Branson, top right, is one of the one hundred and twenty four persons who are now British Overseas Territories Citizens (BOTC) of the Virgin Islands, having taken the Oath of Allegiance and Pledge of Loyalty. Photo: GIS/File
Richard C.N. Branson, top right, is one of the one hundred and twenty four persons who are now British Overseas Territories Citizens (BOTC) of the Virgin Islands, having taken the Oath of Allegiance and Pledge of Loyalty. Photo: GIS/File
 Social Commentator Claude O. Skelton-Cline had accused Branson of using belongership status to mortgage VI land. Photo: VINO/File/Internet Source
Social Commentator Claude O. Skelton-Cline had accused Branson of using belongership status to mortgage VI land. Photo: VINO/File/Internet Source
Sir Branson bought Necker Island in 1979 and began building the Great House on the Caribbean island, which is used by his family and friends as well as being available as a holiday destination. Photo: Necker Island
Sir Branson bought Necker Island in 1979 and began building the Great House on the Caribbean island, which is used by his family and friends as well as being available as a holiday destination. Photo: Necker Island
ROAD TOWN, Tortola, VI – When 124 persons took the oath to become British Overseas Territory Citizens of the Virgin Islands (VI) in the week of July 14, 2023, a familiar name, Sir Richard C.N. Branson, was amongst those listed, according to information released by the VI Government.

Sir Branson, 72, is a billionaire business magnate, commercial astronaut, and is also the founder of the Virgin Group which controls more than 400 companies.

Branson believed to have held Belongership status 

Before then, Mr Branson was alleged to have been holding Belongership status in the territory, a status which Social Commentators had concerns about over it allowing Branson certain privileges connected to the islands he owns in the VI.

Back in 2020, Branson sparked controversy when he announced plans to use his Necker Island property as security to raise a £500m loan from the UK Government in order to offset the drop in Virgin Atlantic's business as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

This he said would save as many jobs as possible, however at the time, social commentator Claude O. Skelton-Cline said the VI should have the right to be able to have oversight in a deal like that.

"But you see you can't do these things when the paste is already out of the tube. First of all, I am never in favour of selling islands. I don't know what that was about back then," he added.

The commentator on the April 21, 2020, edition of his 'Honestly Speaking' radio show, alleged that because Mr Branson was holding Belongership status in the Territory, he can do as he liked with the land as he urged Government to explore if they can have a say in his proposition.

Not in VI for tax reasons - Sir Branson 

Many have wondered why Branson has chosen to call the VI home, with a Guardian report in 2013 reporting him saying it was not for tax reasons but rather, a love for the "beautiful" location. 

The Virgin Group founder had written an entry on his blog explaining the reasoning behind the move from the UK to the [British] Virgin Islands and pointed out that he began living on the island with his wife Joan in 2006.

"I have not left Britain for tax reasons, but for my love of the beautiful British Virgin Islands and in particular Necker Island, which I bought... as an uninhabited island.”

"Seven years ago we decided to move permanently to Necker as we feel it gives me and my wife Joan the best chance to live another productive few decades. We can also look after our health.” 

Sir Branson bought Necker Island in 1979 and began building the Great House on the Caribbean island, which is used by his family and friends as well as being available as a holiday destination to destination.

"I have been very fortunate to accumulate so much wealth in my career, more than I need in my lifetime and would not live somewhere I don't want to for tax reasons," he said.

Mr Branson is also the owner of Moskito Island.

39 Responses to “VI’s newest billionaire citizen: Richard C.N. Branson”

  • The Watcher (17/07/2023, 11:43) Like (32) Dislike (65) Reply
    This man don’t do a damn thing for the people of the BVI with all the millions he is sitting on. Now as a citizen he will continue to poop on the people.
    • @thewatcher (17/07/2023, 12:38) Like (66) Dislike (11) Reply
      He donates money for community projects through his UNITE BVI foundation. Get your facts right!
    • @ the watcher (17/07/2023, 12:39) Like (16) Dislike (36) Reply
      We better stop allowing this foolishness and wise up.... what does this man know about the culture, customs and people of these lands to grant him citizenship? 'He is a real-estate agent' selling the land for millions to foreigners. How many citizens can afford to buy back the land he sells? How often does he mingle with the average citizen of these lands to truly understand what it means to be a citizen? I hope you all now understand what this Governor is up too!!
    • @The watcher (17/07/2023, 13:18) Like (29) Dislike (11) Reply
      You have no clue what you are talking about. He donates a lot through his companies
      • Is that so? (18/07/2023, 06:15) Like (6) Dislike (4) Reply
        How much of his own money did he use to help after the hurricanes of 2017?
    • Watch yourself (18/07/2023, 06:02) Like (11) Dislike (4) Reply
      You know quite a lot of nothing about the millions that Richard has. Fact still remains, it’s his and he’s free to do what he wants with it just like you are free to do what u want with yours. Stop minding the man money and business. Plz tell the reading audience what you does do for the BVI.
    • @The watcher (18/07/2023, 10:15) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
      And soo what!! It is his money. He worked for it. Anybody does tell you what to do with your money? When last you helped ONE person in the BVI not related to you.
    • x (18/07/2023, 16:09) Like (0) Dislike (0) Reply
      "Billions"
  • jj (17/07/2023, 12:07) Like (15) Dislike (9) Reply
    Welcome to the bvi
  • WOW (17/07/2023, 12:27) Like (24) Dislike (8) Reply
    Let me get this straight: wasn’t it a few years ago this man gave up his British citizenship? If my memory serves me right, one of the conditions was that he could remain in the UK for no more than eight months without leaving.
    When asked by the British press at the time, whether his decision had anything to do with dodging taxes on his great wealth, he vehemently denied it.
    But now he has applied for AND been granted UK citizenship through the back door(my choice of words)? Something is definitely amiss here. Was someone paid? Was he unable to return to the Crown as a repentant prodigal son and beg for his voluntarily relinquished UK citizenship be reinstated?
    We live in strange times.????
    • @wow (17/07/2023, 13:30) Like (19) Dislike (17) Reply
      This truly needs investigating...and this should not be allowed.
    • @wow (17/07/2023, 16:27) Like (14) Dislike (3) Reply
      Naturalization does not equal u.k. citizenship. He is a British Overseas Territories citizen. Not a citizen of the u.k.
    • Rubber Duck (17/07/2023, 19:26) Like (8) Dislike (3) Reply
      He has never given up his UK citizenship. Idiot.
      • @rubber duck (18/07/2023, 06:19) Like (3) Dislike (1) Reply
        So, why then did he get BOT citizenship? To vote? Note the last quote …” would not live somewhere I don't want to for tax reasons,"
  • jack (17/07/2023, 12:54) Like (21) Dislike (11) Reply
    We love Richard
  • ? (17/07/2023, 13:08) Like (7) Dislike (4) Reply
    He was in the pic y’all posted last week no?
  • Razón (17/07/2023, 13:17) Like (29) Dislike (9) Reply
    Why so much hatered and malice in some of our heart for others
  • Youth (17/07/2023, 13:36) Like (2) Dislike (8) Reply
    Thank you NDP. SMDH
  • For the comments (17/07/2023, 13:48) Like (9) Dislike (8) Reply
    To read from of people who’s upset with a man who’s not obligated in paying them bills or putting them on. Who’s complaining what he ever did for the BVI etc.
    • @ for the comments (17/07/2023, 16:02) Like (9) Dislike (14) Reply
      He should be obligated to go back to his homestead to make his wealth and stop selling off our territory.
      • @ for the comment #2 (17/07/2023, 22:02) Like (7) Dislike (4) Reply
        He give back more than you would ever do! Stop judging!
        • @ @ for the comment #2 (18/07/2023, 10:56) Like (0) Dislike (2) Reply
          Money has nothing to do with nationalism. There is no value for that!
  • Well (17/07/2023, 14:13) Like (33) Dislike (6) Reply
    Reading these comments, I myself would be discourage from helping, God help these bitter souls of the BVI who all they do is spread lies and hate.????
  • Hmm (17/07/2023, 14:36) Like (18) Dislike (9) Reply
    This article proves that we hold a higher respect and care for people with money. If it were not for the money, he would have gone unnoticed like the rest. We should understand that we can't big up 1 and not belittle the rest subconsciously....
  • good show (17/07/2023, 15:39) Like (20) Dislike (6) Reply
    It is beneficial to these VI that you have chosen to invest and reinvest in these VI.
    Thank You Sir Branson.
    Along with others before and after your arrival our fortune has been blessed as a result.
    • @good show (18/07/2023, 12:33) Like (2) Dislike (0) Reply
      The VI receives its' blessings and fortune from Jesus Christ, always has and always will! Moreover, the VI has always been a destination of wealth... this is why these millionaires/billionaires come to our shores to invest and some to exploit us and our lands because they know the value of these lands and 'we' the gatekeepers.
  • @hmmmm (17/07/2023, 17:19) Like (13) Dislike (7) Reply
    Unless you are a live walking dead, you k n ow that more folks on this lump of dirt in the Caribbee are noticed that don't have a pot to piss in. They crowd every rafter with their wants,noise and ingratitude. They crowd the Courts, prisons,hospital,streets,local cultural events and on and on. Daily. The moneyed wealthy expats ,not so. They give and support with no fanfare. Much respect to Sir Branson and others who have given monetariIy and of themselves and investments, residing quietly and respectfully of these BVI and its people, they are and continue to be contributors to safety , harmony and positive quality of life and living.
    • Ho (17/07/2023, 18:04) Like (6) Dislike (0) Reply
      Well said,hmmmmm
    • Hmm (17/07/2023, 22:37) Like (6) Dislike (3) Reply
      @hmmmm it's nothing personal against the guy, I'm just saying that this article is supposed to be about him getting his citizenship. But why only tell his story? Why only his struggle? Wasn't there a little something we could say about the others? Didnt they contribute to this territory? I respect Branson but he does not represent us, he does not look like us and there is nothing "Natural" about Necker, just ask the workers if the Lemurs dont say enough. Lets be real here, Branson wasnt going to lose sleep if his status was denied.... he owns an island for god's sake. When you are a billionaire dropping a milli here and there in the form of donations it should not be seen as anything grand as it's humanitarian in nature to do so. What is the point of accumulating so much wealth if your not going to help the weak? The truth is, he gets a special article because there is a special interest somewhere between the lines.....could be to generate traffic for engagement, a message to elite friends who knows what comes with his status etc.... who knows? These days everyone wants EQUALITY and by giving him a separate article out of the 100 plus clearly shows EQUALITY is a scam.....which it is by the way.....
  • Auntie Susan (17/07/2023, 19:27) Like (9) Dislike (1) Reply
    Its Sir Richard, not Sir Branson ffs.
  • My Take (17/07/2023, 20:05) Like (1) Dislike (2) Reply
    Richard knows something that the ordinary sheeple are clueless about. My guess is that you won't be able to pull him down with your big claws like you have done others who were more enlightened than the average crab.
  • @Auntie Susan (17/07/2023, 23:56) Like (2) Dislike (2) Reply
    There are scores of "Sir Richard "and that number increases daily, quite possibly.
    To name a few.,
    Sir Richard Burton
    Sir Richard Grenville
    Sir Richard Bishop
    Sir Richard Owen
    Sir Richard Clough
    Sir Richard Rich
    Sir Richard Doll
    Sir Richard Shinreff
    Sir Richard Friend
    Sir Richard King
    Sir Richard Peto
    There is currently one Richard Charles Nicholas Branson
    For clarity of identity and respect, I address him interchangeably as
    Sir Richard Branson or Sir Branson. Simply utilizing my class and upbringing.
    My apology to you for your inability to comprehend such singular politeness.







  • vi (18/07/2023, 05:41) Like (1) Dislike (3) Reply
    The owner of guana island do more for the vi than Richard Branson
  • All the pretty people (18/07/2023, 08:19) Like (6) Dislike (4) Reply
    As yourself this - why so many English people working on Necker and Mosquito? They working as bar tenders, concierge, water sports, any job that interact with the Rich People Sir Richard getting money from. All jobs BVI belongers could do.
    The "local people" that work there are maids, Gardners, dishwasher, all jobs kept away from the guests. This is pure colonial crap that the BVI laws are supposed to shut down.
    These well to do workers need expensive housing. Sir Richard don't want these people living on his islands. There are hundreds of these pretty people all over Virgin Gorda. They get a $1,500 per month housing allowance - driving up housing prices for all the locals.
    So now we ALL pay $1,000 month for rent. This is the billionaires new Caribbean economy. Not something to celebrate in my opinion.
  • 911 (18/07/2023, 12:11) Like (4) Dislike (1) Reply
    once you voice an opinion associated with an European you will get a cut @&&!!!

    one can cuss out folks from the islands but how dear you chat about the milk man

    no one questions where their money comes from because some so happy for the pocket-change

  • Ayo Need to Know Ayo History... (19/07/2023, 15:48) Like (2) Dislike (3) Reply
    AHYO HERO Lavity is who started selling out this country to the likes of Branson and others...When Branson came here, he was penniless. Instead of selling Neckar Island to a local who had the cash ready, like Romneys or O'Neals or others, who he viewed as political rivals, he sold it to Branson for $100k WHICH Branson had to borrow. Google Branson's interview where he's bragging about it, if you don't believe me. The BVI/LAVITY/ AHYO VIP made Branson a BILIIONAIRE, make no mistake about it. Branson turned around and developed the island AND never once hired a local or did anything in the community to invite locals to the island - same as Peter Island! Only after economic hardship in the early 2000's, he started advertising dinner and weekend packages for locals. He then turn around and buy favor in the community via ONE local named GUMPTION. Now he's well on his way to buying the BVI for a couple of cents. When hurricane hit BVI in 2017, this same MS had the nerve to fundraise instead of DONATE and AHYO bowing and praising HE?? This backwards MASA mentality is why the BVI is the dung heap of the Caribbean!! AHYO keep giving away ahyo A## and SH## thru AHYO ribs, then think nothing of it!! Keep thinking these ppl who would sooner spit on you if you were to step foot in their country is your Saviour.


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