"'Bower's book is a devastating indictment' Sunday Times 'Explosive ... Bower reveals a remarkable and sinister picture of the man who likes to appear as the ever-smiling hero' Daily Mail A sensational critical biography of the man and his business practices. No British tycoon is better known, few claim to be richer and none has masterminded a more recognisable brand than Richard Branson. What is behind the success of the buccaneering balloonist, the tabloids' favourite celebrity nude, the 'grinning jumper' and the scourge of corporate goliaths? Tom Bower has a uncovered a different tale to the one so eagerly promoted by Virgin's publicists. Here is the full story of Branson: his businesses, his friendships, his ambition, his law-breaking, his drug-taking, his bullying. Offering an intimate scrutiny of exactly how Richard Branson created and sold himself, this biography reveals Branson to be a single-minded profiteer who, while occasionally generous to others, has a fixed purpose to enhance his family's wealth in secret off-shore trust funds. Instead of a glittering saint, Branson emerges as a devious actor, proud of plucking for his own profit the good ideas of others."