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Duchess of Cambridge most powerful royal fashion influencer

By Don-Alvin Adegeest

30 Oct 2018


As images of Meghan Markle’s outfits during an official tour of Australia are beamed across the world, it appears she is not yet the most powerful Duchess when it comes to fashion.

According to a report by Brand Finance, commissioned by Walpole, Kate Middleton is the most powerful Royal Influencer. In numbers, 76 percent of Americans are now more favourable towards brand UK and 53 percent believe the US should join The Commonwealth.

Key findings see a Special Relationship

The Duchess of Cambridge’s royal endorsement is the most powerful Royal Influencer for fashion and luxury brands, with the Duchess of Sussex (Meghan Markle) in close second. Their style is widely credited to boost American’s views toward the UK as a world leader in fashion.

British monarchy impacts luxury brands

Alex Haigh, Director, Brand Finance, said in a press release: “The Monarchy is one of the most defining features of Brand Britain and the royal impact on the desirability of British luxury brands cannot be overstated. Interaction between a brand and any royal, but particularly the Duchesses, is like the mythical golden touch and can transform a brand’s performance overnight.”

“Recent examples of this effect include Meghan Markle wearing Finlay and Co sunglasses, which created a US revenue increase of 2700 percent. A white coat by Line the Label sold out within minutes of her wearing it publicly, and the huge demand for the clothing caused their website to crash. Searches for the Strathberry Bag Meghan Markle took to her first official engagement with Prince Harry increased 2,044 percent, causing the stock to sell out in just 11 minutes.”

Helen Brocklebank, CEO, Walpole said: “The arrival of the Young Royals has renewed the world’s enthusiasm for all things British. We are not only seeing a strong increase in demand for luxury goods and of course fashion but also tourism is up. What is most interesting is the appeal of Brand UK and the Young Royals to the 25-40-year-old American consumers. This is a demographic that had previously not been engaged.”

America is biggest market for British luxury

“Not only is the US the single biggest market for British luxury, but also it offers a huge growth opportunity for the sector, as the appetite of the US customer for our brands and services grows every year. I’m hugely excited about this research and our returning to New York to show the creativity and innovation that typifies luxury in the UK, and to fly the flag for Britain for US visitors thinking of making a trip here,” Brocklebank added.

The transatlantic trading relationship for the British luxury sector, whether driven by luxury goods on sale in the United States or American tourists visiting the UK, has never been more valuable.

Almost 80 percent of what the British luxury sector produces is destined to export and as the United Kingdom navigates its departure from the European Union the luxury sector is forging ahead with strengthening its trade and investment ties with its key export markets through its trade delegation to New York.

America is the largest and most important luxury market in the world valued at 85 billion dollars, forecast to reach 103.5 billion dollars by 2021 (Source: Euromonitor, 2016).

The USA is also the UK’s most valuable source market for visitor spending in Britain. According to Visit Britain, 3.91 million Americans visited the UK in 2017, an annual increase of 13.16 percent on the previous year, and spent a total 3.64 billion pounds with an average single transaction spend of 813 pounds (Source: Global Blue).