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Jeremy Clarkson ‘highest paid BBC star’
Jeremy Clarkson has reportedly earned more than £3 million over the past year from presenting Top Gear – but, due to the way the series is produced, the majority of his pay does NOT come from the licence fee.
The Guardian today reports that Clarkson is “easily the highest-paid BBC star” thanks to rocketing dividends from the commercial division of Top Gear that retails DVDs and other merchandise.
BBC Worldwide owns half of the commercial division and has received a £4.5m dividend for 2011/12, latest figures reveal.
Clarkson also owns 30% of this company, leading the Guardian to today estimate he has received a £2.7m dividend (up from £1.8m last year).
On top of this, Clarkson reportedly receives around £500,000 from the licence fee which, with other payments, takes his income up to around £3.5 million.
Although the sums are vast, Clarkson reportedly works hard for his money – it his personality that has helped drive Top Gear to such success. Furthermore, although the BBC pays a talent fee to Clarkson, he is actually helping return many times this back to the corporation.
This means the public service broadcaster is profiting from Clarkson’s success. These are sure to be very welcome returns at a time when cuts to the licence fee are forcing spending reviews across the board.
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