News article

Royal start to the GREAT Britain Mini Tour

This world location news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

Princesses launch GREAT-branded Mini on its 2013 tour of the 16 German federal states showcasing the best of what Britain has to offer.

Their Royal Highnesses Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie of York set off in style on 17 January from Berlin’s iconic Brandenburg Gate in a GREAT-branded Mini. They marked the beginning of the GREAT Britain Mini Tour, which will take the UK Government’s GREAT campaign to all corners of Germany and highlight Britain’s rich culture and deep history as well as its business-friendly economy, cutting edge innovation and excellence in education.

Speaking at the press conference of the Great Britain Mini Tour launch, Princess Beatrice explained that, “we are here to encourage more German businesses to join the thousands that are developing successful partnerships in Britain”. The Mini, Princess Beatrice declared, was an example of one of the great things that can be created when British and German expertise combined their efforts. Some 2500 German companies already employ 400,000 people in Britain.

One example is BMW, which produces the MINI in three British locations. Speaking at the launch of the GREAT Britain Mini Tour, MINI Global Sales Director Graeme Grieve declared that “the idea behind the tour is so good, I just wish it had come from MINI”. The Mini, Grieve continued, is an icon of British culture and style and now combines the best of British and German technology.

The remainder of Princess Beatrice and Eugenie’s programme on 17 January also focused on British excellence. At Zalando they met young German technology companies that are taking advantage of investment opportunities in the UK and promoted London’s Tech City as a world class location for 21st century business. One of these companies, Payango, declared that “the start of the GREAT Britain MINI Tour in Berlin for us is a great kick-off into a year where we will open up our international HQ in London. We found the combination of a very competitive infrastructure for tech companies, strong support by UK Trade & Investment and the progressive financial regulations particularly attractive in the UK”. Zalando CEO, Robert Gentz, stated, “the whole Zalando team is very excited to welcome Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie. The UK has set standards in both fashion and e-commerce. It was thus a logical step for us to enter the British market.”

At Bread and Butter fashion fair they promoted the internationally successful UK brand Superdry and supported young designers – Apricot, Louche London, Kusan, Urban Knit, Yumi and Gina Stewart Cox – who are aiming to break onto the German market. Sophia Ciampa, a Director of Apricot, declared: “It was lovely to meet Princess Beatrice. She expressed a positive interest in British designers and fashion brands. It was great that she was coming to see up-and-coming brands like ours, Apricot. Her response to our collection was very positive, which was a great boost to us.” British fashion and design was also the key theme of a visit to Germany’s leading department store KaDeWe.

Today, 18 January, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie are in Hanover, to attend the reopening of Herrenhausen Palace, meet members of the Lower Saxony and Hanover administrations, and visit other sites of historical interest.

The UK’s links with Hanover go back to the 18th century. In 1714, Prince-Elector Georg Ludwig of Hanover became King George I of Great Britain and Ireland. There will be various events in 2014 to mark the 300th anniversary of this “Personalunion”, including the Lower Saxony State Exhibition “When the Royals came from Hanover” which opens on 17 May 2014.