He talks about meeting a 79 year old great-grandfather in Africa who had electricity for the first time and how he could see this would change the future of his family. Branson said he was “committed to working with companies that are going to put solar onto people’s roofs who don’t have any electricity at all. If you have solar you have lights. If you have lights, the children can read and educate themselves in the evenings. If you have solar you can plug in a mobile phone and therefore you may be able to start a business one day. And these kinds of things are actually self-sustainable – it doesn’t have to be done on a charitable basis.”
Branson said, “The more we can run businesses with a purpose, the world is a better world, and I think it ricochets back onto business.
“The businesses that really do good – like Unilever, TOMS, I like to think Virgin and many others – their brands become stronger, people identify with them better, and therefore the business itself does better. ”
Branson carries out his philanthropic work through his non-profit foundation Virgin Unite, which was founded in 2004 and aims to unite people and entrepreneurial ideas to create opportunities for a better world, and has through a team of business leaders called the B Team which states it aims to catalyse a better way of doing business, for the well-being of people and the planet through the development of a ‘Plan B’. The B Team was created in 2013 and states that “the journey towards Plan B is an on-going process we are accelerating in 2016, in collaboration with the ever growing group of leaders working toward a better way of doing business.”