Kate Middleton Is Good for Business


Kate Middleton in Reiss (Bauer Griffin, Getty)

Prince William and Kate Middleton's engagement portrait   (Getty)
Kate Middleton gave the clothing label Reiss a major boost in 2011. Thanks to what is being referred to as the "Duchess effect," the UK retailer's sales shot through the roof. Need proof of Kate's Midas touch? The white Nanette dress she wore for her official engagement photos sold out before the pictures were even released. To keep up with demand, Reiss re-released the $245 dress, which sold out again at the rate of one dress per minute. 

For a meet-and-greet with the Obamas, the Duchess once again selected a Reiss frock. Not only did the $340 dress sell out, but traffic to their site rose 200 percent. A brand loyalist, she elected to wear yet another of their dresses to the Epsom Derby. Hours after she was seen wearing it, people were already selling the dress for $1000 on Ebay.

So what does all of this mean for the family-owned retailer? Well, their year over year profits nearly doubled from $6.6 million to $13.2 million, they can take credit for inspiring a new catch phrase into the pop culture lexicon ("Duchess effect," go ahead say it, it's fun!) and they know what to get Kate next year for Christmas.

See Kate Middleton's lookbook:
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