SIR Richard Branson’s Virgin Money is opening new headquarters in Edinburgh and recruiting 300 staff under plans to become a major force in UK high street banking.
The group said it had secured the lease on a site at St Andrew Square in the largest city centre deal in Edinburgh since 2009.
Virgin Money, which already has about 80 staff in Edinburgh, wants to hire 300 to beef up administration teams as it prepares to launch a full-scale banking service in late 2011 or 2012.
It aims to start offering deposit accounts, followed by mortgages and current accounts, to rival established players.
Virgin Money plans to move into the new base in the summer after buying a lease on 30,000sq ft within the office property from Heineken, formerly Scottish & Newcastle.