LE gains control of Virgin Energy

Virgin Energy is to be consolidated into London Electricity after LE bought a 75 per cent controlling stake in Sir Richard Branson’s energy company this week.

The move leaves a question mark over the future role of Virgin Energy managing director Jon Kinsey.

LE had owned 25 per cent of the company, but Virgin Energy has now sold a further 50 per cent stake to LE, which plans to inject further capital into the one-year-old energy brand. The investment will aid the launch of a telecoms service through Virgin later this year.

Following the acquisition, LE has hinted at appointing one person to oversee its three brands, including SWEB.

LE lost its managing director and top retail supply marketer, Martin Wenban, last month and is looking for a replacement (MW June 14). Wenban left without a job to go to.

In a statement, LE says the day-to-day operation of the business will remain unchanged and Kinsey will continue as the managing director of Virgin Energy.

But a source at LE says: “It has not been decided how the business will be structured. One of the options could be to consider having an overall head of all three brands.”

LE Group directors Bernard Cottrant and Gerald Wingrove will represent LE Group interests on the Virgin Energy Board. Virgin Energy board director Gordon McCallum will represent Virgin.

Virgin Energy marketing director Gary Tubb says: “We needed a lot of money to drive the telecoms and energy business and it was a question of which is the best way to do this.”

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