Saturday, 7 March 2009

Questions for Richard Branson

RE: Ask Richard Branson Anything

I run a music community and record label called Drowned in Sound, and have a two multi-pronged questions…

1) Your exit from music retail was very timely, as was the selling of your stake in V2 Records; what do you think the future is for music consumption? Do you think there’s a sustainable business model left in music - especially for a brand like Virgin, which has foundations of straddling both retail and funding creation? Seemingly, VirginDigital entered the download sphere a touch too early, with sites and services like Spotify now becoming successful, will you be returning to this arena?

2) Virgin Records was forward-thinking and incredibly innovative in many ways and perhaps has had more cultural impact or at least a sense of legacy that’s more relevant to people like me; do you feel there’s an argument for the Virgin brand to begin to re-enter music for philanthropic reasons, with perhaps the Branson family becoming a new Medici family, helping sponsor some fantastic music/technology/artistry during these turbulent times of uncertainty regarding how to fund creative endeavours but also to help Virgin to return to a time where the brand had the ability to reach ‘n’ touch people, especially younger people, and for the ‘brand’ to return to its roots and be culturally relevant?

(I did pitch a combination of these idea to a few people at Virgin, explaining how I’d done similar things which combine these questions, by releasing Kaiser Chiefs and Bat for Lashes debut singles, which attracted people to join our community and it seemed to go down well but am still awaiting follow-up and confirmation of a third meeting, would seem the main people I’ve been speaking to are too busy or have been made redundant)

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