Prince Andrew is losing corporate support for his charitable work following what critics have described as a “car crash” interview with BBC Newsnight.
Companies including KPMG and Aon are distancing themselves from the Queen’s second son in order to protect their reputations.
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Other business supporters of Prince Andrew’s initiatives say they are also reviewing their involvement with him in light of the questions raised over his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein, the billionaire pedophile offender.
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BBC reports: In the interview, the prince – the Queen’s third child – said he still did not regret his friendship with US financier Epstein – who took his own life in August while awaiting trial on sex-trafficking charges in the US.
The BBC has contacted Buckingham Palace for comment regarding KPMG’s decision not to renew sponsorship of Pitch@Palace.
Accountancy and auditing firm KPMG – which is not the only company associated with the scheme – declined to comment.
Pitch@Palace was founded by the prince in 2014 and involves entrepreneurs competing for the chance to pitch their business ideas to influential business figures at St James’s Palace.
The project operates in 64 countries and claims to have created more than 6,300 jobs.
Meanwhile, University of Huddersfield students discussed a motion to put pressure on the prince to resign as chancellor on Monday evening. Their decision will be announced in the coming days.
In response, the university itself said Prince Andrew’s “enthusiasm for innovation and entrepreneurship” was a “natural fit” with its work.
Amid the backlash from the BBC’s interview on Saturday, Prince Andrew is facing renewed calls to tell US authorities about his friendship with US financier Epstein.
The prince said he would testify under oath “if push came to shove” and his lawyers advised him to.