ICYMI: Following their decision to step back from duty as senior members of the royal family, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have moved away from their SussexRoyal brand, shutting down their Instagram and website. Instead, the couple's charity endeavors will fall under a new organization: Archewell. Here's everything we know about Archewell, including, the unexpected inspiration behind the name. (It goes beyond their son's name.)
Everything We Know (So Far) About Harry and Meghan’s New Brand Archewell
1. What Is Archewell?
According to The Telegraph, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been in the process of building their new nonprofit “empire” for some time now. A spokesperson told the outlet that the duo wants the organization “to do something of meaning, to do something that matters.” And apparently they've submitted a handful of proposals to the United States government (where they now reside), under the new brand.
And while details are scarce, according to paperwork filed, the multifaceted plan will include emotional support groups, a multi-media educational component and even a well-being website (could this be The Tig 2.0?!). The couple will also be setting up their own charity and producing educational films, podcasts and books.
2. What Does The Name Mean?
The name, Archewell, actually holds a pretty special meaning to Meghan and Harry. In fact, they used the same inspiration when deciding a name for their son, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor, who turns one next month.
“Before SussexRoyal came the idea of ‘arche’—the Greek word meaning ‘source of action,’” the couple said in their statement. “We connected to this concept for the charitable organization we hoped to build one day, and it became the inspiration for our son’s name. To do something of meaning, to do something that matters.”
They also explained how “Arche” led them to create the moniker “Archewell,” stating, “Archwell is a name that combines an ancient word for strength and action, and another that evokes the deep resources we each must draw upon.”
3. How Do You Pronounce It?
The jury is still out on that one.
It’s still pretty unclear whether that’s a hard “K”, as in ark-well, or a softer, “arch-well” pronunciation. But since their son’s name is pronounced with the soft “ch,” we’re thinking it will be the same for the non-profit.
4. What Did The Trademarks Include?
The 38-year-old and 35-year-old filed a trademark application with the U.S. Patent Trademark Office on March 3 asking for exclusive rights to the term, and the requests for Archewell have been far more extensive than those for Sussex Royal. It includes their intention to reserve rights across “tops, bottoms, shirts, skirts, dresses, pants, jeans, shorts, sweaters, jackets, socks, loungewear, rainwear, footwear [and] headwear," as well as charitable services, emotional support groups, educational materials (think paper stationery, journals, notebooks, pens, pencils and binders), a well-being site and media—podcasts, television shows, digital entertainment content, motion picture films, scripted, unscripted and animated shows. So yeah, the application definitely seems all-encompassing.
5. Who Will Be Running It?
The duke and duchess have enlisted Catherine St-Laurent, formerly of Melinda Gates’ women and families foundation, Pivotal Ventures, as their new chief of staff and to serve as Archewell’s executive director.
“We are proud to be joined by Catherine St-Laurent in this next chapter with us,” the couple said in a statement according to Town & Country. “Her leadership and proven track record working within two organizations that have tremendous impact in the world—the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Pivotal Ventures—make her an incredible asset and we are excited to have her on our team.”
6. When Does Archewell Launch?
While Harry and Meghan did reveal that they are looking “forward to launching Archewell when the time is right,” we really have no confirmation on exactly when that time will be.
A spokesperson for the couple told The Guardian: “The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will spend the next few months on their family and continuing to do what they can safely and privately, to support and work with their pre-existing charitable commitments while developing their future non-profit organisation.”
So, we’re guessing it won’t be soon.