Kate's Family Has Made A Lot Of Money
What Is Kate Middleton's Family Worth?
Much has been made about Kate Middleton’s status as a commoner, but she doesn’t exactly come from poverty. While Middleton isn’t from an old-money family and grew up with two working parents, the Middletons are sitting on a nice fortune – one that’s grown larger as Kate’s grown closer to Prince William. The Middleton family business, Party Pieces, may be worth as much as $50 million, according to the Daily Mail. The business is run privately, so official figures are not available, but analysts say the business’ success plus the family’s royal connection have bumped up the brand’s value. Without the royal link, Party Pieces would likely be worth a respectable $12.5 million – not bad for a young, self-made business. Middleton’s parents, Michael and Carole, were both employed by British Airways when Kate was born, but Carole gave up her job as a flight attendant to stay home with her growing family. Looking for a way to make some extra cash, Carole starting assembling goody bags for children’s parties and selling them to her friends and acquaintances. That little project grew bigger and bigger, and suddenly, they were doing so much business that Michael quit his BA job as a flight dispatcher to help out at home. While the Middletons’ fortune was mostly self-made, they had a bit of a boost from Michael’s family. When Michael’s grandfather, wool merchant Francis Martineau Lupton, died in 1921, he left the family an estate worth nearly $2.5 million today. The Middletons also received generous inheritances from Michael’s mother and father. The business took off when Kate was just a child, allowing the Middletons to move to their sprawling home in Bucklebury, Berkshire, in the mid-1990s, long before Kate met William. But there’s no doubt her relationship with the prince has enhanced the family business – in 2002, after Middleton moved in with Prince William at St. Andrews, her parents plopped down over $1 million cash for a flat in central London. Kate’s close relationship with Prince William has helped the brand’s visibility, but their engagement took Party Pieces to a new level – the business’ website received 300,000 new visitors in November 2010 alone, after Kate and William announced their engagement. Though Kate has a full plate as the new princess-to-be, her siblings Pippa and James have been helping to expand the family business, and the family’s fame may even give them the opportunity to sell their products stateside. Britain’s new princess may have common roots, but there’s nothing typical about her family’s fast rise to riches.