The Duchess of Cambridge, best known as Kate Middleton, is gaining quite a reputation as a fashionista, donning Alexander McQueen on her wedding day and Catherine Walker on a royal tour of Canada last year. But it’s not always high-end designers that the 29-year-old favours – she’s also been spotted shopping in high street favourites Topshop and Zara too.
Now her seal of approval appears to have boosted one family business’s fortunes. London-based Reiss, the brand behind the white £159 (€191) dress the duchess wore for her official engagement photograph taken in November 2010, saw its sales jump from £77.7 million to £87.6 million in the year to 31 January 2011. Operating profits almost doubled, from £4.3 million to £8.5 million.
The young royal’s midas touch could also boost the family-controlled company’s fortunes in fiscal 2012 – the duchess, who turns 30 on 9 January, has gone on to wear Reiss items at a number of high-profile events, including meeting Michelle Obama at Buckingham Palace, since her April wedding to Prince William.
Reiss is run by David Reiss, who took over his father’s East End gentleman’s outfitters in the 1970s. The company branched into womenswear in 2000 and now has over 100 shops or concessions across 14 countries.
But the future of the British company isn’t so certain, according to reports. The Daily Telegraph claims none of Reiss’s three children have shown an interest in taking over the business, resulting in suggestions he might sell in the future. When contacted about this, the clothing company did not respond.