Royal baby boom: Meghan and Harry's £1.1bn bundle of joy
PUBLISHED: 09:14 25 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:22 25 April 2019
The royal family has been influencing the British public's purchasing power for years - from handbags to cars, to jewellery and even pushchairs.
And, with the imminent arrival of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex's first child, the Norwich-based Centre for Retail Research has highlighted two major impacts the baby will have on the country's high street trends.
The first royal retail benefit will be an almost immediate effect on retail sales.
Professor Joshua Bamfield, director of the centre in Rose Lane, estimates that British shops will see sales grow between £50m and £75m straight after the birth.
The spending will be mainly on souvenirs, memorabilia, comestibles and other food and drink.
The centre predicts these sales will be made in the UK and Europe but as Prince Harry and Meghan are carefully followed in Canada and the US, sales are expected to rise significantly further afield as well.
Professor Bamfield said: “Meghan and Harry are an attractive couple and their first child will naturally be of great public interest across the world.
“The couple are well-liked, but the baby, when born, would be seventh in line to the throne, so, although he or she will be someone that will attract much interest from the very start of their life, the baby is unlikely to become King or Queen of Britain.”
Professor Bamfield also said that Meghan's influence will have an impact on the baby clothing and accessory market.
He said: “Meghan is known to have a keen sense of style and she will want to follow a distinctive line in baby products, shawls, baskets, infant clothes baby carriages, and even what toys are used by her child.
“Unbeknown to itself the child will set trends that will be picked up by young parents and grandparents across the globe.”
He added: “As the child gets older what he or she wears will be adopted by many other parents, photographed thousands of times and shared with others across the world. This pattern will be greatest in the first seven years of the child's life but will continue probably for 20 years.”
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The Sussex-driven spending on children's wear and infant products is estimated to be around £1.125bn, including £600m from birth to age five.