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Is Duchess Kate to thank for Reiss sales boost? Brit brand doubles profit

It's no secret that whenever Kate Middleton steps out in a high street bargain, it prompts a retail frenzy - and it seems that one of her favourite stores may now be reaping the benefits...

British brand Reiss has just announced a significant boost in sales for the past year - almost doubling their annual profit.

High street store Reiss boasts doubling of profits thanks to Kate MiddletonHigh street honey: Kate wearing Reiss at Buckingham Palace, in her official engagement portrait, and to the Epsom races. Photos: bauergriffinonline/Mario Testino/WireImage/Getty

According to accounts filed at Companies House, sales increased from £77.7m to £87.6m in the past 12 months, while operating profits rose from £4.3m to £8.5m - not bad considering that the vast majority of their high street competitors are suffering in the economic downturn.

Kate chose to wear Reiss for her official engagement photo shot by Mario Testino (above, centre), and also wore pieces from the high street label to greet the Obamas at Buckingham Palace (above, left) and to the Epsom races in the summer (above, right).

All three frocks sold out within minutes of being identified, causing the Reiss website to crash each time as it struggled to cope with the levels of traffic.

The brand claims that its boosted sales figures are down to a "cooler and sexier" makeover, failing to mention the influence of the Duchess in the accounts statement released.

"The launch of a new sub-brand, Reiss 1971, was the starting point to make the brand much cooler and sexier, to broaden its appeal," they write.

"Every aspect of the brand was appraised, in order to highlight this and to make a more dynamic and sexier statement."

Hmm. We think it might have more to do with Middleton Mania...

FYI - Kate's 'Shola' bandage dress worn to greet the Obamas, has been re-released by Reiss under the new name 'Lola' - and it's just hit the sales. Buy it now.

See more Kate style here, in our pick of her perfect 10 fashion moments: