Richard Branson’s latest Virgin announcement

Three years after NTL and Telewest completed their merger and acquired Virgin Mobile, NTL:Telewest Business has been rebranded as Virgin Media Business.

Branson hinted that the NTL and Telewest brands should have been consigned to the dustbin long ago: “I’ve given our old branding manager a ticket for my Virgin Galactic spaceship – and it’s one-way,” he joked.

Asked whether tagging the word “business” on to the Virgin brand would impact its association with fun and creativity, Branson shook his head: “Business should be fun,” he said. “Yes, the word has stuffy connotations – but business is actually just about a bunch of people creating things.”

Virgin Media Business says it is set to “shake up the UK business telecoms market” and become a compelling alternative to BT. Virgin Media Business will operate from 40 offices located across the UK and will deliver a “highly personalised service” to mid-sized, national enterprises and the public sector.

We interviewed Branson at the tail-end of last year as part of our Saving Britain’s Future campaign, when he gave us his prescription for regenerating the country: “The UK needs less bureaucracy, more attractive taxation rules for business builders, a revitalised private equity sector to back new companies and some co-ordinated investment in infrastructure and transport.” Read his comments here. [Note: He told us last night that he thought the cover illustration was “very flattering”! Check it out here.] And make sure you listen to this brilliant speech by Rowan Gormley on what it’s like to work with Branson – and his embarrassing "silent interview".

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