Prince Harry, Meghan Markle announce flurry of deals in bid to expand media footprint

·4 min read

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are making big moves to expand their business empire — one year after exiting the royal family.

Riding the momentum from a blockbuster televised interview, the couple made several announcements this week, including a new partnership with Procter and Gamble (PG), the same company a young Meghan Markle called out over sexist ads 28 years ago

The multi-year, global initiative was publicized through the couple's Archewell Foundation, and is set to “focus on gender equality, more inclusive online spaces, and resilience and impact through sport.” A financial agreement has not yet been disclosed. 

In addition, Prince Harry's much-anticipated Apple TV+ (AAPL) series with Oprah Winfrey finally has a release date. On Monday, it was announced that the program — titled "The Me You Can't See" — will debut on May 21.

Prince Harry and Oprah Winfrey's mental health will tell tales of the
Prince Harry and Oprah Winfrey's mental health will tell tales of the "human spirit fighting back from the darkest places"

The series will see Winfrey and Harry, who serve as co-creators and executive producers, lead discussions on mental health with high-profile guests including Lady Gaga, Glenn Close, San Antonio Spurs’ DeMar DeRozan, celebrity chef Rashad Armstead, and more. 

The news follows Harry's hiring as the chief impact officer at San Francisco-based mental health startup BetterUp.

At the moment, there are no details on his compensation or employment agreement, although the Wall Street Journal reports he will be joining the company’s leadership team as an “officer of the corporation." 

BetterUp, which serves over 300 enterprise businesses including Hilton, NASA, Chevron, Mars, Genentech, Snap Inc., and Warner Media, raised $125 million in its latest funding round — valuing the company at an impressive $1.73 billion.

BetterUp's growth means there's more wealth for Prince Harry to share in, putting him further down the road toward financial independence. 

In addition to BetterUp, Harry also took on a six month role as a commissioner for the leading non-profit Aspen Institute's new Commission on Information Disorder. Journalist Katie Couric, Color of Change president Rashad Robinson, and the Former Director of the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Chris Krebs all serve as co-chairs of the agency. It is unclear whether Harry will be paid for the part-time gig. 

And then there are the couple's media and investment deals. 

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle inch closer to building $1 billion brand
Prince Harry and Meghan Markle inch closer to building $1 billion brand

In December, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex signed a 3-year podcast deal with Spotify (SPOT) for an estimated $15 million - $18 million. That same month, Markle invested an undisclosed amount in the powdered oat milk latte startup Clevr Blends — her first public personal investment, according to Fortune

Still, it was their 5-year Netflix (NFLX) deal that's generated the most buzz, with multiple reports saying the deal could be valued at up to $100 million.

Combined with the duo's various speaking appearances, which are reported to go for around $1 million, the couple is poised to build a $1 billion brand as mental health advocates, content creators and venture capitalists. 

Financial Impact of Royal Departure

The couple's polarizing departure from the House of Windsor may in fact be fueling interest in the couple's mushrooming business ventures. Yet with the prince relinquishing his royal duties, it's unclear how much — if anything — he'll continue to receive from the royal family.

Before their new spate of deals, the couple's combined net worth stood at $10 million, according to Forbes, with a sizable portion lying in the equity of their nearly $15 million California mansion. For context, Queen Elizabeth II is worth an estimated $500 million.

Prince Harry inherited roughly $10 million from his late mother Princess Diana's estate, with Meghan Markle contributing approximately $2 million (after taxes) from her various works as an actress.

The Sovereign Grant, funded in part by British taxpayers, previously contributed 5% to the couple’s total income. It is currently used to finance and support the official duties of the Queen including travel, security, staff and building upkeep.

The remaining 95% of their income came from the Duchy of Cornwall, a private estate account maintained by Prince Charles. The estate is valued at roughly $1.2 billion, with Prince Charles receiving approximately $28.3 million to distribute amongst his family.

Alexandra is a Producer & Entertainment Correspondent at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alliecanal8193

Read more:

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting