Read what we have been doing...
Looking ahead to 2013
Virgin Money finished the year trading strongly and we feel we've made some good progress in the first year of our quest to make banking better. You can find out more here. There is still much to achieve and in 2013 we will continue to focus on making our customers' experience of banking with us a real pleasure.
Second successful RMBS issue
Virgin Money is mainly funded through retail savings deposits, but a second successful residential mortgage-backed securities deal (RMBS) was completed, raising around £1 billion of wholesale funding, on very good terms. This also demonstrated that the financial markets regard us with confidence and is a real testimony to all that has been achieved.
Virgin Money completed the rebranding and integration of the former Northern Rock business. In doing so, we've combined the strengths of the two businesses in our quest to make banking better.
In September the Festival Fireworks lit up the night sky to close the Edinburgh International Festival. Virgin Money has extended its sponsorship of this great event for 2013.
Edinburgh Festival Fringe
August saw Virgin Money sponsor the Edinburgh Festival Fringe for the second time. The festival brings comedy, theatre, music, spoken word, opera and dance to the streets of the Scottish capital.
Guildford Store opens
The first new Virgin Money Store opened in Guildford, Surrey - giving customers their first taste of the Virgin Money branch of the future.
A fresh approach to high street banking, the Virgin Money Stores offer great customer service and no hard sell, backed by a friendly and knowledgeable team.
Savings accounts for charities
Virgin Money launched a brand new Charity Savings Account offering charities the opportunity to save at a market-leading rate for instant access accounts. The account joined our not-for-profit fundraising service Virgin Money Giving and market leading Charity Credit Card to help make charities better off.
Lounges for Virgin Money customers
The doors are opened on the new Manchester Lounge, which joins those in Edinburgh and Norwich. Lounges offer a haven on the high street and are designed to be places where our customers can relax and local communities come together. Membership is completely free to Virgin Money customers, and so are the refreshments, Wi-Fi and use of our iPads.
Find out more about the Virgin Money Lounges.
'No strings, no stings' ISAs
Virgin Money launched a 'tax-free, catch-free' Easy Access Cash ISA with a great rate, not a short-lived introductory bonus. Plus you get the same rate however you choose to apply and easy, charge-free access to your money when you need it.
"40 Years of Better" TV advert
Virgin Money launched its "40 Years of Better" advertising campaign. The ad, featuring many well known Virgin companies, highlights Virgin’s history of making things better for customers, as Virgin Money prepared to do the same for banking.
The advert was also projected onto Senate House in London, in the world’s first 270 degree outdoor projection.
See the 40 Years of Better TV advert.
Our quest to make banking better starts here
On 1 January 2012, Northern Rock became part of Virgin Money, launching our quest to make banking better for everyone.
Virgin Money announced it would sponsor Newcastle United Football Club. The Virgin Money shirts were unveiled at United’s home game with Manchester United on 4 January, which the Magpies won 3-0.
Sir David Clementi appointed as Virgin Money Chairman
Sir David Clementi, Chairman of Prudential plc from 2002 to 2008 and Deputy Governor of the Bank of England for 5 years (1997-2002), succeeded the late Sir Brian Pitman on the Virgin Money Board as Chairman.
Virgin Money paints the town red at the Edinburgh Fringe
Virgin Money sponsored 'Fringe on the High Street' - the famous range of daily outdoor performances that take place during the Fringe on the Royal Mile and The Mound precinct.
The Edinburgh Festival Fringe is the biggest arts festival in the world and takes place in Scotland’s capital for three weeks every August.
Second Virgin-sponsored London Marathon raises over £50 million
The 2011 London Marathon - the second sponsored by Virgin Money - saw runners raise a total of £51.8 million for charities. £13.8 million of this was raised through 364,500 donations at Virgin Money Giving, Virgin’s own not-for-profilt fundraising service.
Virgin Money - One of the top UK companies to work for
Virgin Money was named among the top UK companies to work for, as voted by employees, in the Sunday Times Top 100 awards.
Virgin Money adds Euro and Dollar Prepaid cards to range
The cards can be used as an alternative to travellers cheques and are safer than carrying cash. The Euro card can be loaded with Sterling and converted directly into Euros, while the Dollar card can be loaded with Sterling and converted directly into US Dollars providing commission free currency.
Customers will receive their main card and a spare emergency card free of charge.
Find out more about the Virgin Prepaid Travel Money Card.
Virgin Money helps 'START'
Virgin Money joined with The Prince’s Charities Foundation at the inaugural Start Festival.
Promoting sustainable living, the event held in the Royal Gardens of Clarence House, Lancaster House and Marlborough House, included a Pledge Tree from Virgin Money.
Visitors were urged to make a pledge about what they had been inspired to start doing as a result of the festival, such as pledging to use energy saving light bulbs, insulate the loft or turn the tap off when brushing their teeth.
The event also included a Virgin Money Giving exhibit aiming to inspire people to ‘Start giving just a little extra to charity.’
Virgin Money switches to Positive Payment Hierarchy
Virgin Money switched to a positive payment hierarchy for its credit card range, enabling customers to pay off their most expensive debt first.
As a result of the changes, the vast majority of customers who don’t pay off their balance in full each month will pay less interest as repayments will be allocated to clearing debt charged at the highest interest rate before debts at lower rates.
Virgin Money wins award
Virgin Money won 'Best Credit Card Provider (Balance Transfer Rate)' for the Virgin Credit Card in the Moneyfacts Awards 2010 (3rd year running).
WL Ross invests in Virgin Money
US investor Wilbur Ross (WL Ross) committed £100 million of capital to Virgin Money to help with the organic growth of Virgin Bank, with a promise of a further £500 million to fund any acquisitions.
Under the terms, WL Ross committed £100m of new capital to Virgin Money and became a 21% shareholder in the Company. James Lockhart, Vice Chairman of WL Ross, also joined the Virgin Money Board.
Banking and commission report
Virgin Money welcomed the findings from ‘The Future of Banking’ report.
The report, published by the Future of Banking Commission concluded that the current UK banking system had failed customers, investors and taxpayers.
The report called for reform of the banking sector, and responding, Jayne-Anne Gadhia, chief executive of Virgin Money called on UKFI to apply a public-interest test to the restructuring and disposal of bank assets to promote increased competition in the banking sector.
As part of the report Jayne-Anne Gadhia gave evidence to the Commission, alongside the late Sir Brian Pitman, then Chairman of Virgin Money.
Virgin Money celebrates a record-breaking marathon
Virgin Money celebrated its sponsorship of the first Virgin London Marathon in April. The race saw a record number of runners on the starting line – 36,946. Runners raised close to £50m for charity.
Among the runners were Sir Richard Branson and his team, who enjoyed a friendly rivalry with son Sam and daughter Holly. Sam and Holly went on to break the world record for the largest number of people joined together to complete the race.
Visit the Virgin London Marathon website.
Virgin Money launches two new credit cards
Virgin Money launched two new credit cards to celebrate its five-year deal to sponsor the Virgin London Marathon – the world's biggest charity fundraising day.
The Virgin London Marathon Card and the Virgin Charity Card both allow customers to donate up to 1% of their spending on card purchases to a charity of their choice. This charity can be changed throughout the year.
Virgin Money buys Church House Trust
Virgin Money acquired regional bank Church House Trust, giving Virgin Money a banking licence.
The acquisition of the Yeovil based bank, completed on 27 January allows Virgin Money to offer its own banking products.
Virgin Money expands into online charity fundraising
Virgin Money launched its not-for-profit online charity fundraising service as part of a drive to significantly increase the money going directly to good causes.
Its new service virginmoneygiving.com officially opened to all fundraisers for all charity events across the country.
Virgin Money launches new life cover
Virgin Money has teamed up with Friends Provident to provide competitive life insurance.
Virgin Money launches new travel insurance policies
Virgin Money launched a range of travel insurance policies. The range is designed to meet the needs of a variety of travellers such as families, backpackers and over 65’s. Winter sports and adventure holidays are also available with customised travel insurance options.
Virgin Money wins award
Virgin Money won 'Best Credit Card Provider (Balance Transfer Rate)' for the Virgin Credit Card in the Moneyfacts Awards 2009.
Sir Richard Branson attempts record Atlantic crossing aboard Virgin Money
Sir Richard Branson and a 24-strong crew (including Olympic gold medallist Ben Ainslee, and Richard's son and daughter Sam and Holly) attempted to break the world record for an Altlantic crossing in a mono-hull yacht aboard the maxi yacht Virgin Money.
Just over two days into the gruelling record attempt the crew were forced to admit defeat when a monster wave took out the spinnaker and ripped a huge gash in the mainsail.
Virgin Money wins award for the Virgin Credit Card
Virgin Money won 'Best Credit Card Provider (Balance Transfer Rate)' in the Moneyfacts Awards 2008.
Virgin signs five-year London Marathon sponsorship deal
Virgin Money was announced as lead sponsor of this epic and inspirational event, starting with the 2010 London Marathon. Virgin hope to encourage runners to raise an amazing £¼ billion over the five-year term of the sponsorship.
Virgin Climate Change Fund wins award
'What Investment' magazine awarded the Climate Change Fund 4 stars and ‘Product of the Month’ for March 2008.
’Every 43 Seconds’ poster campaign launched
Following phenomenal uptake of the Virgin Credit Card, a major national campaign was launched, with key sites on the London Underground and roadside posters.
Virgin Money launched the Virgin Climate Change Fund, a fund that invests in companies who are driving outstanding growth and who are environmental leaders in their field.
Virgin Money wins even more awards
Virgin Money scooped another three gongs at the Your Money Direct Awards 2007 - for Best Online Credit Card Provider, Best Pet Insurance Provider and Best Motor Insurance Provider.
|April||Virgin No.1 in the charts!|
Virgin Money named Britain’s fastest growing private company in the influential Sunday Times annual Profit Track 100 report.
|January||New Year campaign on TV|
Big new unified advertising campaign launched, covering all Virgin Money products. Featuring 3 American office workers in a lift discussing life's savvier financial decisions. UK wide coverage on TV, radio, press, posters and internet.
Instant discounts on Virgin Credit Card
Virgin Credit Card customers have been offered instant benefits with offers from Virgin Holidays, Virgin Megastores, Virgin Wines, Virgin Active and Virgin Money. The discounts and offers are available at the point of sale to anyone using their Virgin Credit Card.
Check out Cardholder discounts for more info.
|September||Virgin Pension scoops Five Star Award|
Virgin Money was awarded Money Management magazine's 2006 Five Star Award for pension performance on regular contributions.
The award is given for achieving above average performance combined with reasonable charges.
Your Money Publisher's Special Award
By tackling a taboo area without euphemism or evasion, Virgin Money's Cancer Cover is a groundbreaker and has merited a rare Publisher's Special Award from Luke Broadhurst, publishing director of Your Money.
|June||Sir Richard Branson launches the Virgin Money Credit Card in South Africa|
Virgin Money relaunched Virgin Life Cover with terminal illness cover included and its lowest premiums ever.
1st in the UK with Virgin Cancer Cover
A national campaign starring Nick Jones as a man whose life gets more interesting when he says ‘yes’ achieved national coverage.
Virgin Money wins Interactive Marketing and Advertising award for Best Finance Advertising
|May||Virgin launches Car, Home, Travel and Pet insurance|
"There's nothing we love more at Virgin than improving the customer's lot. With our new insurance products, not only will they save money on their premiums, but they won't get charged for paying monthly either", Richard Branson said at the launch.
|April||Richard Branson takes 100% ownership of Virgin Money|
As a signal of our ambition and Richard's belief in the company, he invested £90 million to buy out our other 50% shareholder, bringing full ownership of Virgin Money into the Virgin fold.
Virgin Money welcomes its millionth customer worldwide
Virgin Money goes global
Launch of the Virgin Credit Card in Australia begun our plans to roll out the successful UK model around the world. The ‘Oz’ card with its radical new clipped corner, bright colour range, low interest rates and ‘mates’ rewards, was a big hit with Oz customers who’ve been getting a raw credit card deal from their banks for years.
|July||Virgin Money grabs more awards|
Virgin won 'Best Pension Provider' at both The Guardian and Your Money Awards.
|June||The Virgin Credit Card becomes an industry 'Best Buy'|
"The Virgin Card is a regular feature in the best buy tables". Moneyfacts
|May||Virgin launches personal loans|
|February||Virgin Direct and virginmoney.com merge to become Virgin Money|
Virgin Credit Card launches
"UK customers have long been made to feel grateful just to be offered a credit card by their bank and it's high time people were given a better deal." Richard Branson stated at the launch.
Virgin shines at the Guardian Consumer Finance awards
|April||Stakeholder pension launched|
Virgin became the only company in the UK to get the green light to automatically turn our existing pension into a Stakeholder, as it already met all the standards.
Virgin ‘Call Centre of the Year’ for third year running
|May||Virgin enters the workplace|
Our Group Personal Pension set the blueprint for the Government's Stakeholder launch in 2001.
|April||More gongs at the Your Money Direct awards|
Your Money Direct voted us 'Best direct ISA and pension provider', as well as 'Best Internet life insurance provider'.
On our fifth birthday we reach 1/3 million customers, insuring peoples’ lives to the tune of £2 billion.
|January||Virgin calls on FSA to beef up risk wordings in the small print|
Two years later the Government-sponsored 'Sandler Review of long-term saving' was released, reaching the same conclusion.
|September||Service excellence recognised|
Virgin achieved the prestigious Management Today/Unisys Service Excellence Award.
|April||Virgin launches a range of ISAs championing CAT standards|
|January||Branson's guide to PEPs, TESSAs and ISAs|
To help consumers through the ISA minefield. Virgin launched 'Branson's guide to PEPs, TESSAs and ISAs'.
|December||Virgin leads the way on pensions|
We welcomed Government plans to 'benchmark' pensions, paving the way for Stakeholder.
|November||Virgin launches deposit account|
|September||Virgin fights for standards|
Virgin (and 10,000 of our customers) lobby parliament to get high standards 'kitemarked'.
|June||Call Centre of the Year|
Awarded by BPS Teleperformance. Based on 54,000 mystery shop calls to 2,000 companies.
|October||Virgin launches the revolutionary One account|
|August||Virgin hits £1 billion funds under management and 200,000 investors|
|May||Virgin's pension pack wins top award from the Plain Language Commission|
|February||Virgin lobbies Government|
Virgin was the first company to pledge not to ask life insurance applicants for the results of any genetic tests. After a four year campaign by Virgin the Government forced other companies to do likewise.
|November||Richard puts a rocket up the pension industry|
Virgin Personal Pension launched, years ahead of its time, challenging the cost and complexity of the average pension, which has five or more different charges.
|February||Virgin Direct's first TV advert|
The opening scene shows a mystery man getting out of his car clutching a bundle of papers. In true Roger Cook fashion, the voice-over explains how last year this man convinced 30,000 people to part with their cash, promising to help them avoid the taxman while taking no commission himself. In the final frame the camera reveals that the culprit is in fact... Richard Branson.
|October||Income PEP launched|
Virgin launched the cheapest income PEP on the market and challenges everyone to match our high standards.
|April||£42m invested in first month|
Virgin Direct opens for business
Virgin received 4,000 calls on its opening day and it was Virgin who championed index tracking by launching the best value PEP in the market.