The Real Question: Why Are Harry And Meghan Bothering?

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So Harry and Meghan are to go off and build Brand Sussex into something that’s worth lots of money. So that they can enjoy the lifestyle that having lots of money provides. Well, OK, we’d all like to be having the private jets and the voluptuous houses bit:

A couple of hundred million? Five hundred? Heck, why not round the whole thing up to a cool ten figures and say it is worth a billion. After it emerged that Harry and Meghan have trade-marked the “Sussex Royal” brand, lots of experts have argued it could generate hundreds of millions in royalties and co-marketing deals.

The couple hardly need any subsidies from the British taxpayer anymore. Within a few months, they will be building a massive business empire based on their undoubted star power.

The trouble is, even in a world where celebrity is a currency, and where the likes of the Beckhams or Kardashians have managed to turn fame into wealth, the alchemy of that process is a lot trickier than it looks. In truth, the Sussexes face some major obstacles.

There is that, it’s more difficult than it looks. Just a little tale from the nether reaches of this celebrity world. Blac Chyna has gone from stripping to being a celeb and part of the route was via Rob Kardashian and bearing his baby. Fair enough and you go girl. Hey, play the hand dealt and do it well.

One part of the routine is that a nightclub will pay a ‘sleb to turn up and be in the nightclub. All connected with the Yogi Berra point, no one goes there any more it’s too popular. See, ‘slebs do, so you should.

There is a going rate for this service and one complaint from Chyna’s end of the bargain is that her rate dropped substantially once she was no longer Rob’s squeeze. Can’t recall the numbers but it was from low five figures for an appearance to low four – hardly enough to get her to the requisite city, hotel, limo etc.

The point being not that we expect Harry to be opening nightclubs. Rather, that becoming a ‘sleb by being connected to something does rather depend upon the connection.

OK, let’s imagine they get over that. They succeed even.

We’re still left with the point of, well, why are they bothering?

Because what’s the end state going to be? Say they make £100 million as a capital sum? They’ve 50 years ahead of them to spend it in. So, we’d be cautious and spend only the income from it – £5 million a year? They’re already living a more than £5 million a year lifestyle. Sure they are – forget what hits the books here in terms of actual cash income and think about what they can consume in terms of security, travel, housing, servants and all that. Stuff that rich non-royals have to pay for out of their incomes.

Now, obviously enough, a proper valuation of that lifestyle they’ve currently got is difficult but this is the correct question that should have been asked before they set off down this path. What’s the amount of cash they’ve got to pile up before their lifestyle beats what they’ve already got? Then, what’s the chance that they’re going to reach that figure?

Frankly, from this accounting point of view it’s difficult to work out why they’re bothering.

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[…] Or at least one that’s interesting to me. […]

Mr Yan
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Mr Yan

The Real Question: Who The Feck is Blac Chyna?

Jim
Guest
Jim

Where are you investing £100m to get £5m income?

Jim
Guest
Jim

And of course that £5m is taxable so the net amount available for limos, private jets, bodyguards etc is considerably lower.

Now of course if you can swing it that your ‘charitable foundation’ has to bear all those costs then it becomes more bearable [cough] Clintons[cough]

The Mole
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The Mole

Isn’t the real question what can’t they do now that they will be able to do with an ‘independent’ lifestyle? The impression I get is that Megan feels very constrained by the rules of being part of the royal household. How much is the utility of not feeling imprisoned by those rules and having a veneer of free choice worth? Perhaps there are some things money can’t buy and they value that utility higher. In reality I think they are going to be disappointed and realise that the protections the royal household brings are worth it and that the rules… Read more »

Boganboy
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Boganboy

If the taxpayer doesn’t have to support them anymore, well good luck to them.

But somehow I expect they want the taxpayer to cover all their expenses and anything they earn to be just pocket money.

Jim
Guest
Jim

What she wants is to be able to shoot her mouth off about every woke issue going, and not have her hypocrisy pointed out by the media, as they do in America, where the media all cheer lead when the Hollywood royalty start spouting politics and wokeness, yet happen to not point out the hypocrisy of people who consume more than 100 ordinary folk do spouting off about climate change, feminism and inequality.

Esteban
Guest
Esteban

The only reasons I can think of are that she can’t be as Loud and Woke as she wants while in the Royal Family, she can’t resume her acting career (and isn’t getting any younger), and she chafes at the relatively minor demands on her time – being at a hospital opening instead of skiing.

Esteban
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Esteban

It will be interesting to see if they if they can play the Colin Kaepernick schtick here. Can you merchandise yourselves as Royals while distancing yourself from the Royals?

jgh
Guest
jgh

“in a world where celebrity is a currency”

But but but! The BBC Jeremy Vine vs Unknown non-sleb case has just declared that celebrity has no value, only the actual work has value.

Rhoda Klapp
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Rhoda Klapp

IDGAF

john77
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john77

Because thety will have a lot more spending money (even adjusted for inflation) than Edward VIII did when he became Duke of Windsor

Quentin Vole
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Quentin Vole

“You’re not ‘rich ‘ unless you can live off the interest on your interest.”
(Sorry can’t remember who first said this)

james morgan
Guest
james morgan

It’s not the money Tim – it’s not being told what to do every week by somebody else. You know. Makeup your own timetable. Set your own rules. etc. I thought that was obvious. You know – be allowed to do stuff that if you’re a Royal you can’t do. Or am I missing something here?

Spike
Guest
Spike

This complaint comes down to the old Barack Obama line, “At some point you’ve made enough money.” Surely these two can never achieve profitability on their own, nor least of all financial independence. What they seek is royal permission for a sabbatical to bum around North America like a Yankee college student taking a year off with a Eurailpass – without burning their bridges entirely, and with the whole nation watching.

Ian Campbell
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Ian Campbell

You’re putting the whole motive down to money. Freedom from ‘the firm’ to have their own life needs a value to offset your accountants mind.

Pcar
Guest
Pcar

If that’s what they wanted they should have done it before engagement.

I want Zero Taxpayer & Royal money spent on these money-grubbing, grasping woke victim turncoats

Ian Campbell
Guest
Ian Campbell

1) decision on engagement is expecting things of that couple that are not expected of others. Certainly not possible in the RF context.
2) He couldn’t help being born into the RF so the state should pick up his security. It is de minimis cost to taxpayer who get enormous £ benefit from the firm. And I am no royalist, just arguing the realities.

Spike
Guest
Spike

Ian, I am not, merely claiming that the financial prospects for this gambit are unpersuasive. Yes, they want freedom from “the firm,” but without giving away their fringe benefits!

Ian Campbell
Guest
Ian Campbell

was actually answering the article’s line, not yours. We all give up fringe benefits for a better life. I know I have.

Snarkus
Guest
Snarkus

more to the point, why does anyone give tuppence about them ?