The company, which plans to offer multi-day trips to space, has announced a deal to combine with New York-listed Social Capital Hedosophia (SCH), led by former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya. But after the kingdom murdered by the Washington Post journalist Jamal Khashoggi, Virgin Galactic refused to cooperate.
The deal will let Branson fund Virgin Galactic spaceships until they are able to become profitable.
Richard Branson says the company has taken a "huge step towards becoming the very first publicly listed human spaceflight company" - along with its sister manufacturing organisation, The Spaceship Company.
Branson is in a race with fellow billionaires Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk to get a private foothold in space, although both the Amazon boss and the Tesla founder have broader ambitions than space tourism.
Branson earlier this year announced that the Galactic's development and testing program had advanced sufficiently to move staff and space vehicles from the test site in Mojave, California, to the commercial headquarters, dubbed Spaceport America, in New Mexico.More news: Konta is retaining focus as she joins title mix
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However, his ambitious timeline for taking consumers into space stumbled a fatal setback when the original SpaceShipTwo crashed on a test flight in 2014, killing the co-pilot and seriously injured the pilot.
The combined firm will have an enterprise value of $1.5 billion.
Citing "great progress in our test flight programme", he says this means the remaining hurdles to commercial space travel "are steadily being cleared".
A 90-minute flight, which allows passengers to experience a few minutes of weightlessness, costs about $250,000.
Branson said in February he'd planned to fly into space himself aboard one of his company's vehicles to mark this year's 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 launch in July, but as we're in July, this remains to be seen whether they will meet the set date.
Virgin's current reservations represent about $80 million in total collected deposits and $120 million of potential revenue.