April 10, 2008
The Legacy of Elvis Presley
At the time of his death in 1977, Elvis Presley’s estate was worth $10 million, but without the benefit of sound estate planning, 73 percent of the estate went toward legal fees, estate administration costs, and estate taxes, leaving only $3 million to his daughter.
But the estate was more than liquid assets. Elvis Presley was a marketable commodity and with good management his estate grew to $250 million posthumously. Under the control of Priscilla Presley, Elvis Present Enterprises was created in 1980. By 2004 the company had revenues of $45 million annually and 100 licensees, 600,000 annual visitors to Graceland, and intellectual properties including music and film that had grown in value because the Elvis Presley “product” had been kept alive.***
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