Jeremy Clarkson gets £3m windfall, on top of BBC Top Gear £10m deal
JEREMY CLARKSON enjoyed a £3.2m (€4m) payout from the company he set up to cash in on 'Top Gear' before he sold his stake in the business to BBC Worldwide.
The television presenter secured a windfall of more than £10m by selling his 30pc stake in the firm, Bedder 6, to the BBC's commercial arm in recent weeks -- but not before getting the massive payout.
Mr Clarkson received a £2.7m dividend from the company in the 12 months to April 2012, up from £1.8m the previous year. He was also paid an inflated talent fee of £456,000 -- which is a 30pc increase on his fee of £350,000 in 2011, according to accounts filed at Companies House.
These payments came on top of the fees the BBC pays the 52-year-old for his appearances on 'Top Gear', thought to be around £500,000 a year, and are likely to spark fresh criticism about the amount of money the BBC pays its stars.
BBC Worldwide established Bedder 6 with Mr Clarkson and Andy Wilman, 'Top Gear's' producer, in 2007 as a way of boosting their income from the show without taking the money directly from the licence fee.
The company cashes in by selling the licences for 'Top Gear' merchandise and international versions of the popular car show, with Mr Clarkson and Mr Wilman taking a slice. However, the corporation has since unravelled the deal, paying both Mr Clarkson and Mr Wilman handsomely in the process.
Mr Clarkson will receive more than £10m for his share of the company, rising to £15m depending on its performance, while Mr Wilman, who had a 20pc stake, will receive up to £10m.
Mr Wilman also took a sizable payout from Bedder 6 before selling his share. He received a £1.8m dividend payment, up from £1.2m the previous year, whilst his talent fee jumped 40pc to £100,000. (© Daily Telegraph, London)