In 2013, Sir Richard Branson's Necker Island abode appeared on MTV Cribs. If you saw the episode, you would have noticed that Mariah Carey was hanging out by herself in a bikini in Branson's house while he gave a tour. Much to some viewers' surprise, Branson has been happily married to his second wife, Joan Templeman, since 1989.
Who is Templeman and how did she get involved with billionaire entrepreneur Branson?
How Joan Templeman met Richard Branson
According to Travel & Leisure Magazine, the Scottish-born Templeman was married to another man when she met Branson. However, Branson pursued her and even managed to get her on a plane to an island alongside him. Of course, Branson had to pretend he wanted to buy the island, but it didn't end up being a far-fetched fib after all. Branson bought the island and renamed it Necker Island, which was ultimately the location for his and Templeman's wedding.
Joan Templeman has a growing family.
Templeman has two children with Branson—Holly and Sam. Tragically, she lost her first-born daughter, Clare Sarah, after the baby girl was born three months premature. Templeman has four grandchildren, including Bluey Rafe Richard Branson as well as Etta, Artie, and Lola Snow Templeman Andrews.
Templeman's daughter, Holly, is now head of Virgin Unite, where she spearheads the funding of non-profit causes for her father's conglomerate. Templeman's son, Sam, is a serial entrepreneur and even teaches meditation and yoga.
Branson credits his wife in his memoir
Aptly titled Losing My Virginity, Branson's memoir talks about his life leading up to billionaire-level success. Coming from a line of attorneys, Branson didn't exactly build his way up from nothing. However, he heavily credits Templeman for contributing to his success.
In a similarly wealthy upbringing, Templeman was raised by a rich ship carpenter in Glasgow, Scotland. Despite her family's financial comfort, she always worked to support herself until finally meeting Branson.
Branson is Joan Templeman's second husband.
Branson and Templeman were both married once before. Branson's first wife was Kristen Tomassi. They were married for seven years before divorcing (reports suggest they had an open marriage, but Tomassi ultimately left the relationship).
As for Templeman, her first husband was Ronnie Leahy, a Scottish keyboard player in the heavy metal band Nazareth, which was popular in the United Kingdom. They were married for 12 years before ultimately divorcing.
Is Joan Templeman tied up with Branson's critics?
In 2020, Branson's Virgin Airlines fell harder than his space travel company. At the worst of it, Branson made it known that he wanted a loan from the U.K. government for his two airline businesses under Virgin Group, which were impacted negatively during the travel halt amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Meanwhile, critics highlighted that Branson was potentially avoiding high taxes by moving his businesses to the British Virgin Islands, noting an air of hypocrisy.
Branson responded to these criticisms by saying he and Templeman didn't move offshore for tax purposes and that most of their collective wealth is illiquid, or tied up in investments.