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When Harry and Meghan decided to walk away from their roles as full-time working members of the British Royal Family, they walked away from a very vast fortune.
Not that they’re doing too badly themselves, with some sizeable deals lined up with the likes of Spotify and Netflix, although they were not paid for the bombshell Oprah interview.
The Firm—also known as “Monarchy PLC”—are the public faces of a $28 billion empire that pumps hundreds of millions of pounds into the United Kingdom’s economy every year…
Following Harry and Meghan’s departure from official duties, the number of full-time senior royals has been winnowed down to eight. Aiding Her Majesty as members of The Firm are an elite group of seven royals: Prince Charles, who is next in line for the crown, and his wife, Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall; Prince William, second in line to the throne, and Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge; Princess Anne, the Queen’s daughter; and Prince Edward, the Queen’s youngest son, and his wife, Sophie, Countess of Wessex.
You’ll notice Prince Andrew’s name isn’t there, as he was ousted for his ties to disgraced paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
Sure puts all these recent Meghan and Harry ‘greatest Royal Family crisis in XYZ years’ headlines into perspective.
Atop The Firm’s foodchain is Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, although it’s reported that she doesn’t always have the final say over how the business is managed.
Being a member of The Firm also comes with high expectations for keeping the moneymaking machine running for generations to come. The crown holds, but cannot sell, nearly $28 billion in assets through the Crown Estate ($19.5 billion), Buckingham Palace (est. $4.9 billion), the Duchy of Cornwall ($1.3 billion), the Duchy of Lancaster ($748 million), Kensington Palace (est. $630 million) and the Crown Estate Scotland ($592 million).
Forbes also estimates that Queen Elizabeth has another $500 million in personal assets.
In the fiscal year ending March 31, 2020, the Crown Estate pulled in more than $700 million, with more than $475 million in profits.
The Queen’s personal assets comprise investments, art, jewels, and real estate, including Sandringham House and Balmoral Castle, although she can’t actually flog any of it herself.
Most of that will be passed down to Prince Charles, and gut instinct says he’ll be leaving most of it to Prince William when his time comes.
The Royal Family itself receives 25% of the Crown Estate income, with the other 75% going to the British Treasury.
Last year’s Sovereign Grant, which is used by the royals to cover “official expenses” like payroll (Buckingham Palace alone employs around 1 200 people), security, travel, housekeeping, and maintenance costs, was roughly $120 million.
Forbes goes on to break down how Prince Charles and Prince William rake in the cash in detail, which you can read here.
Ultimately, moneywise, it’s not a bad family to be born into, if you can stomach the rigid rules and nonstop harassment by the British press.
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