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What’s in a number?
19th Dec 2012

If you already have private number plates on your car, do you know the real reasons behind why you bought them? Were you hoping that displaying an eye-catching personalised registration would roll back the years for you? Kahn News investigates the real reasons behind why people purchase cherished number plates.

Cherished number plates are always going to attract a number of keen buyers. They are snapped up for a variety of reasons. Some discerning individuals purchase private number plates because they simply find conventional number plates random and annoying.

Much sought after short registrations don’t usually come from the DVLA, but from existing owners – as they were all either issued in the early years.

For instance, the record breaking F1 number plate – the most expensive number plate in the U.K and one of the most valuable in the world - was purchased from Essex County Council for £460,000 by Afzal Kahn in 2008.

The 108-year-old registration was previously on a £30,000 Volvo S80 used by the council chairman.

However, the council may rue the decision to sell, Afzal Kahn recently turned down a £5 million offer for the record breaking number plate.

Private number plates are seemingly an obscure type of investment, but the facts and figures show that they are a valid alternative to the traditional ways. It is no surprise then that this trade, which has turned over an incredible £1.68 billion in the past 20 years, is showing no signs of slowing down.

“There is a huge demand,” said a DVLA spokesman, which issues all British number plates.

“(The) release of the ‘11’ numbers was our most lucrative launch in 22 years because you could make lots of different names, like AL11SON. We sold a record-breaking £16 million worth of private plates on the first day.”

This goes to show; cherished number plates can be a good investment, if you pick the right one. VIP 1, which originally belonged to Pope John Paul II’s pope mobile, was bought for £62,000 in 2004 – two years later, Chelsea F.C owner Roman Abramovich shelled out £285,000 for it. The likes of 51 NGH perfect for Singh went for £254,000 whilst its sister plate MR51 NGH went for £101,000 even though a few years ago, both number plates were deemed surplus to requirements.

And if you want to know about the ultimate number plate collection – look no further. From the regal 4 HRH number to the footballers S50 CER and F00 7IE numbers to the 00 77, 4K and 4 AK number plates - Afzal Kahn’s very own collection did not come together overnight, he spent a meticulous amount of time sourcing prestigious numbers.

The important thing to remember here is that investment is not just about money put aside in a saving account, stocks shares, ISA’s – a less traditional way ‘to put money aside’ in a relatively risk free way is investing in the right number plate, and if you play your cards right, you can certainly maximize your investment.

At Kahn Design, we have many clients who have been satisfied with our no holds barred advice on which private number plates are likely to not only hold their value, but increase in the future. We also discuss the merits of each registration mark, the positives and the negatives, in a positive and transparent manner and show you exactly how to minimize your risk. We can proudly say we never have and never would advise a client to invest in a poor quality personalised registration.

If you are looking for an investment, or interested in selling or advertising a personalised registration – contact our team to discuss your interest and requirements. There’s no obligation and no fee to take your interest further.

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