Sales & Marketing

Obtaining a Royal Warrant: Everything you need to know

7 min read

17 March 2014

Royal Warrants are granted to those who supply goods or services to the British Royal Family. Here is everything you've ever wondered about how to join this ultra-exclusive club.

Within the UK, Royal Warrants of Appointment are granted to those who supply goods or services to members of the British Royal Family; specifically to companies or tradespeople who supply the three most senior Royals; The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh and The Prince of Wales.

The honour of a Royal Warrant of Appointment to the Queen is the highest royal accolade available to a company and, along with those issued by The Duke of Edinburgh and The Prince of Wales, is prestigious recognition of a well-established working relationship with the Royal Household. If a company is able to secure Royal Warrant status, then there are considerable advantages to be had.

BENEFITS OF A ROYAL WARRANT

A sense of prestige: The practice of awarding Royal Warrants has been in place since the Middle Ages, meaning that any company that attains the accolade will become part of a long and distinguished tradition. This lengthy heritage provides immediate prestige as the British Royal Family is famous the world over and symbolic with refinement and class.

Improved branding: One of the key rewards afforded to those who achieve the status of Royal Warrant of Appointment is the opportunity to display the Royal Coat of Arms alongside their own branding. The Royal heraldry can be incorporated on products, advertising, packaging and stationery; whilst the business is also permitted to use the legend “By Appointment” in recognition of the facilities provided to the Royal Household.

Reputational boost: The credibility of a company will receive immediate enhancement. The inclusion of the Royal Coat of Arms on a company’s branding improves the integrity of the business as the heraldry is internationally recognised, meaning that standing with prospective clients will be enriched by the association with royalty.

Part of an elite: There are hundreds of thousands of registered companies in the UK, yet only around 800 are “by Royal appointment”; meaning that those achieving it become part of a very select group. The privilege is granted for an initial five years, before coming up for review by the Royal Household Tradesmen’s Warrants Committee, which means that membership of this exclusive club is for an extended period – provided that standards are kept high.

HOW TO OBTAIN A ROYAL WARRANT

The granting of a Royal Warrant isn’t something that is undertaken lightly and is the culmination of a relationship established and maintained over a number of years. 

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Some of the key pointers towards obtaining a Royal Warrant are as follows:

Spot a niche opportunity: The requirements of the Royal Households are many and varied, covering a large cross-section of skills and needs, which means that there’s every opportunity for a company to achieve the accolade, regardless as to how seemingly obscure a product or service might be. The granting of Royal Warrants is not restricted to certain areas of trade and industry so a business needs to explore its opportunities and see where it can fit in.

Build a relationship: Those looking to achieve the Royal stamp of approval need to use whatever channels they can to build a relationship. If the Royal Household approaches a company, fantastic. But if the company needs to approach the Royal Household itself then it should do so. If they manage to strike up a rapport and convince them of the quality of its product or service then this should be worked on in order to begin trading.

Provide a quality product: The quality of the goods or services that are delivered to the household needs to be of the highest standard. After all, the prestige lent to companies that achieve Royal Warrant status means that there will be many rivals clamouring to secure a business contract and become the main supplier. A supplier needs to make sure that whatever services it provides hits the benchmark.

Deliver impeccable service: No matter what the product, be it goods or a particular service, it needs to be delivered in an exceptional manner. Customer service should always be a priority, but when that customer is one of the Royal Households then a business needs to ensure that it’s on top of its game.

Provide longevity: A Royal Warrant is not granted lightly. A company has to have been a regular supplier of goods or services to the households of either The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh or The Prince of Wales for a minimum period of five consecutive years. Therefore the levels of service that are maintained need to have been consistently good for a considerable amount of time before a company is able to experience the considerable benefits of a Royal Warrant status.

Leon Edwards is group managing director of Versapak International, an online supplier of tamper evident solutions. Versapak has supplied cash bags, mail pouches and security seals to Windsor Castle, St James’ Palace, Buckingham Palace and the Palace of Holyroodhouse for the last ten years, the result of which means that as of the 1st of January 2014, Versapak has been granted the status of Royal Warrant of Appointment to her Majesty the Queen.