Already entrenched in Wall Street through Softbank’s acquisition, Fortress Investment group through one of its principals Wes Edens now plans on taking over the transport arena after it announced its plans to construct the first private intercity rail service in the US early this year. The investment firm through Brightline launched its first service which runs between Miami and West Palm Beach and has plans to expand the service into Orlando and Tampa.
To further increase its footprint in this space, Wes Edens who is also a shareholder in Brightline led the company into a strategic partnership with Richard Branson’s Virgin group. Richard Branson’s small stake in rail service will create a win-win situation for both companies, as Branson will for the first time in two decades since he ventured into UK’s rail arena, have an opportunity to be part of the US rail market. For the past one decade, Branson’s Virgin group has been trying to penetrate the US market, and this was the ideal channel to make that happen.
On the other hand, the partnership benefits Fortress and Brightline with growth, as the Virgin group is already a well-established and trusted brand. Having been in service since 1970, and with investments in almost every imaginable realm, the Virgin group was the perfect go-to company for Brightline train. The minority stake by Branson’s group comes with other perks as well, as it allows Brightline trains to rebrand itself to Virgin trains USA.
Fortress Investment group believes that because the two companies share the same vision of redefining public transport and are already big names in the corporate world, the partnership will give them a competitive advantage in this rather public field of business. Learn more at newfortressenergy.com about Wes Edens
More details about the partnership
Even though Branson’s company has a stake in the new Virgin’s train USA, the management of the rail service will be carried out by Fortress group. Additionally, the two companies only announced the partnership but did not disclose the IPO documents.
Who is Wes Edens?
Wes Edens is one of the titans of Fortress Investment group. He has been part of the alternative investment firm since its inception and is one of its principals today. Wes Edens is also a renowned business mogul and is chairman and co-founder of Brightline, hence his involvement with the partnership between the Virgin group and Brightline. Additionally, he is a sports enthusiast, which explains his stake in Aston Villa.