Gold rush and demand for David Bowie coins fuel Royal Mint

A gold coin

A rush to invest in gold and silver and the demand for commemorative coins in honor of David Bowie has helped the Royal Mint return to annual profit.

The state-owned coin maker announced it had posted a pre-tax profit of £ 12.4 million for the year ended March 31, compared with losses of £ 200,000 last year when investors invested in precious metals amid the pandemic.

The mint said its consumer division had a record performance, with profits climbing from £ 1.1million in 2019-20 to £ 12.7million after revenues nearly doubling to £ 1.1bn.

The 1,100-year-old group, which makes coins for the UK and countries around the world, and also offers investment products, said sales of gold and silver have doubled while demand for its new digital savings platforms has skyrocketed.

These were particularly popular with millennial investors, with those who invested in their online DigiGold platform up 430% as commodity prices rose.

Investors flocked to safe havens like gold as the pandemic broke out and stock markets collapsed.

The Royal Mint, based outside of Cardiff, attracted more than 25,000 new customers during the year and used the boom in demand to increase its market share.

It also thanked the strong sales of its historical coins and exclusive pieces, with a popular cultural series starring music superstars David Bowie and Sir Elton John leading to record sales internationally, particularly in the US and Asia.

Other high-demand products included a limited 9.5 kg gold coin for the Queen’s 95th birthday and a Great Engravers series that sold out in half an hour.

Anne Jessopp, CEO of the Royal Mint, said: “As spending habits change, we are committed to reinventing the Royal Mint and securing our long-term future as a UK manufacturer.

“By expanding in areas that complement our heritage, we have attracted thousands of precious metals customers, showcased British craftsmanship and generated record revenues.

“We are 1,100 years old, but we are firmly focused on the future.”

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