Imagine Hillary Clinton or Michelle Obama carefully typing in the details of a Canon printer cartridge in order to sell it on Ebay. They fix the price at 8 dollars and wait hopefully for a buyer. On other occasions they scour the online marketplace for goods and pay around 3 dollars for some digital bathroom scales and 2 for a Winnie the Pooh alarm clock.
Not very likely? Maybe not. Yet that’s exactly what ex-British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s wife has been doing with her time now she’s Britain’s ex-“First Lady”.
Mrs Blair (or Mrs Booth – she sometimes uses her maiden name professionally) has no financial need to buy or sell stuff on Ebay. With her husband, she’s amassed a 60 million pound fortune since those early days in power in London’s Prime Ministerial home,10 Downing Street. That’s around 95 million dollars.
In the last two years, Mrs Blair has bought over 100 items on Ebay, including spoons, Lego toys for her ten-year-old son Leo, a covre for an Apple iPhone and a sign, for around 4 dollars, that reads Beware of the Hen Poo.
Mrs Blair is selling on Ebay too. She sold two plates, one of which had been repaired, and got about 5 dollars for them. She also sold a piece of paper – a bookplate – that had been autographed by husand Tony. She got around 15 dollars for that!
Perhaps more controversially, she sold off a Locman Mare Titanium watch (no, I don’t know what it is either) that she advertised as “unused in its original box with guarantee”. Which may leave Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi a bit miffed as he gave Tony Blair the watch as a present when he was in power.
Cherie shops at both ends of the market of course. She and Tony Blair own seven grand properties in total, most recently buying a £5.75 million Grade I-listed mansion in Buckinghamshire. Cherie promptly spent a quarter of a million pounds buying Georgian and Regency furniture. Not on Ebay.
The couple also have a £3.7 million home in London’s prestigious Connaught Square. And over the last few years Cherie has bought million pound houses for each of her three older children – Euan, who is 26, Nicky (24) and Kathryn (22).
Cherie can shop pretty much anywhere she likes and buy pretty much anything she wants and has no need to go anywhere near Ebay looking for bargains or flogging her belongings at knock-down prices. She can shop online or in person at Harrods, Harvey Nicks or any swishy London store any time she wants to. The fact that she’s using Ebay services could be a bit of a marketing coup for the online marketplace:
“Ebay – so good even millionaires use it!”
“Ebay – Cherie Blair can’t get enough Ebay stuff!”
Then again – p’raps not….