Even Branson may fail, a great deal will be learned for future aerospace engineering. These type of work is always highly speculative. For many of who have tried, most would fail. People who are into innovation and research have to accept this risk. You have to give Branson put his own money and has skin in this high risk game - just like how Allen and Gates or two Steves (and their failed and often forgotten counterparts) did more than 30 years ago. I have far more admiration to these folks than private equites who seek to cash out their biotechs and dot coms with rubbish IPOs.