Virgin Australia Airlines Pty Ltd, formerly Virgin Blue Airlines, is Australia's second-largest airline after Qantas and it is the largest airline by fleet size to use the 'Virgin' brand. Now based in Bowen Hills, Brisbane, the airline was co-founded by British businessman Richard Branson, the founder of parent Virgin Group and former Virgin Blue CEO Brett Godfrey. It was established in November 1999 with two aircraft operating on a single route, and suddenly found itself catapulted to the position of Australia's second airline after the collapse of Ansett Australia in September 2001. The airline has grown to directly serve 29 cities in Australia from hubs in Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, using a fleet of narrow-body Boeing and Embraer jets; and Airbus and Boeing widebody jets.
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