Richard Branson--the flashy balloon-flying mogul who's built an empire based on the word "Virgin"--is getting ready to introduce Virgin Cola to the United States. And every container of the syrupy Coke competitor will come in a buxom bottle called "The Pammy," shaped after everybody's favorite ex-Playmate.
"It topples over," cracks Branson in the Washington Post.
The soft drink, which has been titillating thirsty guys overseas for the past four years, only accounts for 1 percent of soda sales in the U.K. But that's not stopping the irrepressible Branson from taking on mega cola companies Stateside.
"We hope to give Coke and Pepsi a run for the money. They are near monopolies," he tells the Post. But "there's no point" in doing business if you aren't "having fun doing it."
And this busty beverage screams fun. Branson says he dreamed up the Pam-shaped bottle after he and his wife ate dinner with the former Baywatch babe. (The Virgin honcho says Anderson has given him permission to use her name for free, though a spokeswoman for Anderson says she was unaware of Virgin Cola heading to the U.S.)
Not everyone's yukking it up over the Pammy, however. An executive with the National Organization for Women grouses to the Post: "I think that the idea of using Virgin as a corporate logo was offensive to begin with, and the Pammy soda really just plays on schoolboys' fantasies. It seems juvenile but not unexpected from the Virgin companies."
Lighten up, says a "not worried" Branson. "If people want to take it too seriously, they can take it too seriously."