Businesspeople have been put off by the current situation in Ukraine but Branson pointed out that the best investors invest when things are difficult: “Personally, I think that Ukraine is a good place to invest. I don’t think it can get financially any worse than it is today," said Richard Branson, British businessman, investor and founder of Virgin Group.
Branson, who arrived in Kyiv to give a seminar on 30 April, 2015, told Hromadkse that he is in discussion with a couple sectors about investing in Ukraine. Though he refrained from making an official announcement, he said that he was hopeful that Virgin would start doing business in Ukraine.
His advice to Ukrainian businesses who want to expand their brands was to think of the world as one country. “If you have a product that works well in your country, it could well work well throughout the world,” said Branson.
One thing that Branson stressed is that Ukraine must put together in order to attract foreign investment is a 10-year government-led plan to make the country energy self-sufficient. He believes that a green energy revolution in Ukraine would stop money going out to other countries. He also emphasised the need for the Ukrainian authorities to take a different approach to drug abuse – to treat it more as a health problem than a criminal one.
// Hromadske's Ruslan Khavriuta and Yevhen Yevreiskyi spoke with Richard Branson in Kyiv, on April 30th, 2015.