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Aviation

Richard Branson in Mumbai; meets CM to speed-up hyperloop, launches new flight to city

December 16, 2019: British business magnate Richard Branson was in Mumbai last week to discuss the Pune-Mumbai hyperloop project with Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and launch the new London-Mumbai flight of Virgin Atlantic.

Virgin Atlantic had previously launched London-Mumbai flight in 2005 and 2012 only to withdraw them eventually in 2009 and 2015.
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Virgin Atlantic had previously launched London-Mumbai flight in 2005 and 2012 only to withdraw them eventually in 2009 and 2015.

December 16, 2019: British business magnate Richard Branson was in Mumbai last week to discuss the Pune-Mumbai hyperloop project with Maharashtra chief minister Uddhav Thackeray and launch the new London-Mumbai flight of Virgin Atlantic.

In 2008, Virgin Hyperloop One has committed to working with the state government to create the world’s first hyperloop transport project in between Mumbai and Pune to bring down the travel time from 3 hours to 30 minutes. Virgin Atlantic had previously launched London-Mumbai flight in 2005 and 2012 only to withdraw them eventually in 2009 and 2015.

“I’ve always been so inspired by the entrepreneurial spirit of the Indian people. I’m so excited that they’ve embraced the hyperloop concept and share our vision of creating new and sustainable transportation for the region,” said Richard Branson.

“The fact that Virgin Atlantic has returned to the Mumbai route for the third time shows how if you’re willing to accept when something isn’t working, and look at other options (hopefully to return to it when conditions are more favourable), then you might have a stronger shot at success,” he added.

The chief minister’s office said, "Richard Branson requested the chief minister to expedite the project. Branson highlighted the benefits of the project and reflected on Maharashtra's unique role in the future of technology development. CM acknowledged that the project is important for Maharashtra. While this meeting did not involve major decision-making, the CM mentioned that the appropriate processes will be executed to facilitate the negotiation."

The discussion reportedly was on the influx of foreign investments, the potential to create new jobs and the introduction of new technology in Maharashtra.


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