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Branson remembers emotional USD1 billion exit from Virgin Records

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October 24
5:09 AM 2013

On the 40th anniversary of the sale of recording company Virgin Records Wednesday, founder Sir Richard Branson disclosed to Reuters that the exit process was hard for him.

"Of course, it was very hard - it's like selling your children. I mean, you build something from scratch, we had just signed Janet Jackson, we had just signed the Rolling Stones when we sold it, and I remember running down Ladbroke Grove, tears streaming down my face with the check for a billion dollars," Branson said.

Branson with three other people had founded the record company in 1972. Virgin had helped grow the rock movement and the new wave music. It had backed artists from varied music genres like Mariah Carey, French electro-dance duo Daft Punk and British pop band the Spice Girls. Iconic punk bank the Sex Pistols was credited by Branson in boosting the company's position in the music industry as a major music label.

Virgin Records was later bought by Thorn EMI in 1992 for USD1 billion to fund Branson's airline company. Virgin Records is now owned by Universal Music Group, a subsidiary of Vivendi SA.

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