Virgin Records, Ltd. was a British record label founded by English entrepreneur Richard Branson, Simon Draper, Nik Powell and Tom Newman in 1972. The company grew to be a worldwide music phenomenon, with platinum performers such as Roy Orbison, Devo, Genesis, Keith Richards, Janet Jackson, the Human League, Culture Club, Simple Minds, Lenny Kravitz, dc Talk, the Smashing Pumpkins, Mike Oldfield, Spice Girls and more on their list of artists. It was later sold to Thorn EMI in 1992.
Wholly owned by Universal Music Group after its purchase of EMI in 2012, UMG absorbed its British operations to create Virgin EMI Records in March 2013, which absorbed Mercury Records UK.
Today, the operations of Virgin Records America, Inc. (a unit of Virgin Records, Ltd.) are still active and are headquartered in Hollywood, California, as it operates exclusively via Capitol Music Group since 2007. A heavily minor amount of artists remain on Virgin Records America's roster, which today is mostly occupied with European artists such as Bastille, Circa Waves, Corinne Bailey Rae, Ella Eyre, Grizfolk, Walking on Cars, Seinabo Sey, and Prides. American artists include only L'Tric and Rise Against.
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