Virgin Group CEO Sir Richard Branson has teased details of a new app which will serve customers at his new music festival, Virgin Fest, set to open in the US sometime in 2019.
Virgin’s V Festival sponsorship was cancelled in 2017. The annual festival had run successfully for more than two decades. It was replaced by Rize festival.
The US announcement marks an entrance back onto the festival market for the perma-bearded billionaire.
“Virgin has always been able to change things up and shake up an industry, so I am confident that the team at Virgin Fest will be able to do the same with their festival and choosing the lineup will be part of that,” he told Rolling Stone. “While I plan to leave the curating of the lineup to the experts, I’ll make sure to keep them aware of my favourites.”
Branson says he aims to “ensure music is a force for good”. He plans to introduce a ffestival app for its attendees, allowing patrons to upgrade to VIP on their phone, have food and drink brought directly to them and “seat-to-seat chatting” that will allow you to link up with your friends at a certain stage.
The two-day event will hold up to 25,000 attendees per day, will have no camping option and will be taking place somewhere on the East Coast with “lots of sunshine and an outdoorsy feel to it.”
The festival also aims to bring “a level of cleanliness that you would only typically get at a high-end festival,” according to Virgin Produced CEO Jason Felts.
He added: “We’re not going to have a carbon-copy lineup with any other festival out there. The top couple of lines will be recognisable acts, but they may not be super-Top 40. It would’ve been Daft Punk before Daft Punk was Daft Punk.”
“Obviously, music is Virgin’s background,” Branson added. “As we move into space and cruise ships and hotels, it’s important that we keep our roots through things like festivals.”