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Queen Elizabeth proves her billion pound worth ahead of landmark date

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Research carried out by Brand Finance has broken down the income and costs of the Monarchy, separating out the economic benefits such as the Crown Estate and effect of the new heirs to the thrown Charlotte and George.

On September 9, Queen Elizabeth II will move beyond Queen Victoria’s 23,226 days, 16 hours and 23 minutes on the thrown – putting her top of the tree when it comes to time of rule over the UK and Commonwealth.

In 2015, the Monarcy’s contribution in the form of leisure, tourism and accommodation was found by Brand Finance to be £535m, with operating surplus generated by the Crown Estate and effect the Duchess of Cambridge (Kate Middleton) has had on fashion and the brands following thereafter with £288m and £152m respectively.

The biggest drain when it comes to costs during 2015 was the price of security, found to be £104m. The annual Sovereign Grant was £40m while the cost to local councils was £22m. The Monarchy holds on to tangible assets worth £20bn.

David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, commented: “As Queen Elizabeth II approaches this historic milestone, she heads a Royal Family near a peak of popularity. Yet the old debate over whether the Monarchy should be retained continues to rage.

“The principle of whether monarchy is an appropriate and fair form of government in the 21st century certainly remains open to question. However Brand Finance’s research shows that from an economic standpoint at least, the royalists firmly have the upper hand.”

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In a Real Business article from December 2014 looking at the Queen as a brand and business, we found out that she has 1,200 employees – 450 of whom are paid by taxpayers. Earlier in 2014 it had been revealed that the Queen and her family were down to a final reserve of £1m, from £3.3m in 2012 and a high of £35m in 2001.

However, her impact on the economy was demonstrated when we explained business improvement network New West End Company, which represents over 600 businesses around Bond Street, Oxford Street and Regent Street, said London companies alone achieved £120m worth of extra sales during the Diamond Jubilee celebrations as more than two million visitors from over 100 countries entered the city.

Looking in more detail at the Brand Finance research, Prince George had an economic benefit of £76m, based on fashion and other brands worn, used or otherwise endorsed, while his younger sister, Princess Charlotte, has already surpassed him by helping contribute £101m to the economy.

Read more about the impact of the Royal Family:

“A Royal Warrant can confer a significant premium to brands in certain industries such as luxury, food, sporting goods and fashion, yet are currently awarded at no cost to the holder. The introduction of royalties could provide a significant new revenue stream,” Haigh added.

“The unofficial endorsement of Charlotte, George and Kate in particular has a profound financial effect running into millions annually. The demand for authentic connection to or emulation of key members of the royal family is by no means fulfilled. This too presents a major opportunity.

However, Haigh and Brand Finance concluded that, though the “monetisation” of the Monarchy may sound “beyond the pale” to some, in straightened times of continuing austerity in Britain, the Royal Family may come under increasing pressure to pay its way in more ways than it does now.

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