LONDON—The newest member of Britain's royal family hasn't even arrived yet, and retailers here are scrambling to cash in on the keenly awaited birth.
The Duchess of Cambridge—the former Kate Middleton—and Prince William are believed to be past the mid-July due date for welcoming their budding son or daughter into the world. The baby will be third in line for the British throne, behind its father and Prince Charles, who is first in line to succeed Queen Elizabeth II.
Retailers aren't waiting for the actual birth to profit from what they hope will be a baby bonanza. They're touting everything from royal-baby-themed clothing for infants to luxury hotel suites for parents and more tongue-in-cheek items, like sick bags.
Central London's Grosvenor House hotel is offering a royal nursery-themed suite at the princely sum of up to £6,675 ($10,000) for a three-night stay, complete with a cot bed, a Beatrix Potter decorated changing area and a doll's house. The top-end package includes a private tour of Buckingham Palace, a baby sitter and personal grooming services, among others.
High-street retailers are also looking to get in on the action, offering key chains, mugs and other commemorative items. British children's stores Mothercare MTC.LN -0.74% PLC and Jo Jo Maman Bébé Ltd have launched their own lines of royal-inspired baby grows, bibs and bootees. Pandora A/S, PNDORA.KO -1.92% a Danish-based jewelry maker, is due to launch a gold and sterling-silver baby carriage charm for its bracelets, which will be available once the baby is born for £55.
Baby-themed paraphernalia on offer includes less traditional fare, such as games and other applications for mobile phones and nail polish in baby pink and blue hues. And British designer Lydia Leith has created a sick bag with a sketch of the royal couple and a baby on the front, with the words "Well Brought Up"—on sale for £3.
The coming infant is already the subject of a children's book. "Shhh! Don't Wake the Royal Baby," a story about chaos at the royal palace and the baby's inability to sleep.
Analysts at U.K.-based Centre for Retail Research expect the royal birth to boost linked-in retail sales in the U.K. by £243 million during the nine weeks in July and August. That total includes £80 million estimated to be spent on souvenirs and toys, some £76 million on books, DVD's and other media and £87 million on festivities.
Meantime, the wedding of Prince William and Ms. Middleton in April 2011 boosted U.K. retail sales by more than £500 million, according to the Centre for Retail Research.
更新时间 2010年 11月 23日, 格林尼治标准时间15:29
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