Joined: 13 Feb 2006
|Posted: Mon Aug 28, 2006 7:44 am Post subject: Queen of Hearts is bigger earner than Elvis DIANA’S £2bn LEG
|Queen of Hearts is bigger earner than Elvis DIANA’S £2bn LEGACY
Daily Star Weekend
27 August 2006
PRINCESS Diana has become a £2billion moneyspinner nine years after her death.
When she was alive the 37-year-old self-styled Queen of Hearts had a fortune of around £35million.
But since she was killed in a Paris car crash in 1997 she has grown more valuable than the likes of Elvis Presley, John Lennon and JRR Tolkien.
Di has “earned” around £222million every year compared with Elvis’ £25million.
ICON: The Diana memorial fund has amassed more than £100million
And as the ninth anniversary of her death approaches on 31 August, experts say the industry surrounding her shows no signs of slowing. A string of ventures launched since her tragic death still rake in huge sums.
● The Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fund, launched with £20million donations from fans, is now worth over £100million – £38million of it from Elton John’s charity single Candle In The Wind.
● Franklin Mint – the world’s largest maker of memorabilia – has made nearly £1billion selling Di artifacts.
● Internet auctions have made another £850million – including £5million for one American collector. DOMINIK LEMANSKI
Experts say it’s no wonder Diana has become such a huge earner considering 2.5billion people around the world tuned in to watch her funeral. The biggest beneficiary has been Franklin Mint. Its US owners Stewart and Lynda Resnick have turned out a string of goodies, including dolls and a commemorative plate.
TRIBUTES: Diana figurines and calendars, below, have been snapped up by royal watchers
The billionaires made a fortune out of Di’s name and image after a bitter court battle with her estate for the right to produce the dolls.
In 2002, after four years of wrangling, the Diana Memorial Fund settled out of court – handing over £13.5 million to charities chosen by the Philadelphia-based firm.
The fund, whose trus tees include Diana’s sister Lady Sarah McCorquodale, 51, donates cash to charities which were close to Di’s heart.
Deals signed by the fund include one to produce a purple Beany Baby. There’s also been Diana Lottery scratch cards, calendars and other items.
It’s not just Franklin Mint which has made a fortune from Di’s name.
Private internet auctions have also seen sets of memorabilia sell for millions at a time.
At one sale by the American collector Alicia Carroll more than £5million worth of keepsakes were sold including a boxed piece of wedding cake from Diana’s 1981 wedding. It’s estimated that more than £850million has been made from similar auctions worldwide.
In her 1996 divorce from Prince Charles, Diana got £17.5million, income from the Duchy of Cornwall and an allowance for her private office – worth an estimated £35million.
One royal source told the Daily Star Sunday: “If Diana could see how valuable her name and image have become she would be totally astounded.”
Diana, Princess of Wales is and always will be The People's Princess.