Virgin Hyperloop One, one of the best-known players developing the high-speed transportation technology, is attracting "big interest" from Saudi investors, the company's newly appointed chairman said Monday.
"There is a big interest in Hyperloop in Saudi Arabia," Ahmed bin Sulayem told CNBC's Dan Murphy in an interview Monday. "I think when the right time comes, we will restart talking to Saudi Arabia about their plans and how Hyperloop can fit in those plans," he added.
Sulayem is also group chairman and chief executive of Dubai-headquartered port operator DP World, which is a major investor in Virgin Hyperloop One. He was appointed as Richard Branson's successor shortly after the British billionaire departed his role as chairman of the firm.
Branson left the position last month, stating the company would need a "more hands-on" chairperson, and that it would be "difficult" for him to continue in the role due to constraints resulting from his work in philanthropy and Virgin Group's various business units.
The executive's exit from the company followed uncertainty around whether Virgin Hyperloop One would continue to conduct business with Saudi Arabia, owing to Branson distancing himself from the country after the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. Branson suspended negotiations over a proposed $1 billion investment in Virgin's space companies, Virgin Galactic and Virgin Orbit, after Khashoggi's death.