A Royal Warrant is granted to companies who regularly supply the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales (or their households). Getting the royal warrant is a tricky business, and one of the most desirable assets for companies. Some of our suppliers here at Hamper Lounge, including Prestat Chocolates, have found themselves part of this ultra-exclusive club – but how does a company go about getting the royal seal of approval?
Criteria for the Royal Warrant
The decision of who to appoint with a royal warrant is made by the Monarch (Queen Elizabeth II), her husband Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and Prince Charles, Duke of Cornwall. There are currently only 816 holders of the Royal Warrant in the UK, encompassing everything from artisan craftspeople to larger enterprises. There is no requirement for the company to be UK-owned or based, and firms which hold the warrant do not provide their services or goods free of charge to the Royal Family; every transaction is commercial, meaning there’s no negative impact on the company’s earnings. Royal Warrants are initially granted for five years, with the expectation of possible renewal after this time.
Detecting a Warrant Holder
Companies holding the Royal Warrant can display the Royal Arms. This does not indicate exclusivity of supply, and each warrant has its own Legend, which explains which member of the Royal Family has granted the warrant and the nature of the services and goods which are being provided. The Lord Chamberlain provides rules on how to display the Royal Arms, and where, with appropriate areas including products, stationery and advertising.
Obtaining a Royal Warrant
To qualify for the ‘by Royal appointment’ status, companies must focus on building both their offering and their reputation. As there are so few warrant holders, this is an elite group indeed, and boosting your chances is often the result of careful branding and relationship building over several years. Warrants are reviewed by the Royal Household Warrants Committee a year before they are set to expire – and are only renewed if the quality of ongoing services is sufficient to keep hold of the prestigious badge of honour. In the case of bankruptcy or sale, the warrant is also automatically reviewed. To be more likely to obtain the Royal Warrant, companies must deliver a carefully balanced combination of longevity (as the honour is not bestowed lightly) and superior service, marking them out as one of the most distinguished businesses in the world.