Boris Johnson ‘could make more than £ 3m a year’ from book deals and speeches
Boris Johnson could make more than £ 3m a year from book deals and speeches after resigning as prime minister, an industry expert has estimated.
Mr Johnson’s memoirs alone are set to earn him around £ 1m, according to Giles Edwards, author of The Ex Menabout former world leaders.
The prime minister’s predecessors, including Theresa May, Tony Blair and David Cameron, have made a fortune from book deals and speaking at events – the most lucrative of which were abroad.
Margaret Thatcher was paid £ 3.5m in 1993 for The Downing Street Yearsand Mr Cameron was reported to have earned £ 1.5m for his memoir For The Record.
Mr Blair, thought to be the highest-earning former prime minister in British history, was reported to have been paid up to £ 5m in 2007 for his autobiography A Journey.
Since leaving office in 2007, he is reported to have amassed at least £ 20m in all through business and political ventures.
He is said to earn up to £ 300,000 for an after-dinner speech, while Mr Cameron has reportedly been paid £ 120,000 for one speech of just an hour.
Theresa May, who like Mr Johnson was in office for three years, has earned around £ 2.1m since leaving the top job in 2019.
The MP recorded in the Register of Member’s Interests that she was paid £ 404,080 for six speeches she gave in the United States. In 2020, a speech in South Korea on global responses to the pandemic coronavirus was said to have earned her £ 136,000.
Parliamentary documents showed she was given up to £ 11,700 an hour for making virtual speeches during the pandemic, Yahoo! reported.
Gordon Brown has earned more than £ 1.4m since he stood down as prime minister in 2010, according to the BBC, which was all donated to charity.
Neil Martin, a senior agent at NMP Live, a speakers booking agency that represents celebrities including comedian Sir Lenny Henry and Nigel Farage, said Mr Johnson would be able to command “six figure” sums on the circuit, but he would make even more cash on the international stage.
“Everyone knows Tony Blair did extremely well on the speaking circuit, but the British people see your own prime ministers and leaders very differently from the rest of the world,” he said.
“Tony Blair’s vast income from speaking has come from America and Asia. Businesses in the UK aren’t going to pay a fortune to hear Tony Blair speak.
“Cameron has made a lot of money doing speaking, but I would imagine that the bookings in the UK are a lot less than they are internationally – and it’s going to be the same for Boris.
“He will get snapped up, probably by a large American speaker agency that will get him more work in the vast territory that is America and Asia than in the UK.”
Aside from future earnings, the prime minister also has assets to fall back on. He jointly owns a £ 1.2m house in Camberwell with his wife Carrie, as well as 20 per cent of his father’s Somerset farm.
However, observers have speculated that Mr Johnson’s divorce settlement in 2020 – from Marina Wheeler – together with childcare and schooling costs have cost him dearly.
Before he was prime minister, parliamentary records showed he was one of the highest earning backbench MPs, earning £ 275,000 from his Daily Telegraph column.
But according to Financial Times calculations based on the register of MPs’ financial interests, he earned more than £ 4m from outside interests in 14 years.
That included £ 450,000 from speeches, £ 600,000 from columns and £ 500,000 from advances and royalties on a book he was writing about Shakespeare.