Spice girl effect on City and business

Are the Spice Girls finished? And does it matter a jot? Yes and yes, says the stock exchange. David Lister, Arts News Editor, analyses the rumblings and concludes that girl power has not yet been deposed.

Predictions of the demise of worldbeating pop groups are always made with relish and have been made since the dawn of rock`n`roll.

The Duke of Edinburgh once found it necessary to defend himself publicly when he was reported as saying The Beatles were "on the wane", a remark which inspired hundreds of column inches. "I actually said they were `away'," he explained.

Now it is the turn of the Spice Girls. At the start of the week it was confirmed that the Spice Girls had sacked their manager who had helped build their image and exerted total control. By Thursday night they were being booed off the stage at an awards ceremony in Spain. "Never believe your own publicity," pop guru Pete Waterman warned as the girl power champions said they would be managing their own affairs henceforth.

Hubris rarely comes so quickly. But does any of it matter outside the group's fan base, which anyway is largely aged under 10 and has little interest in backroom fallout or Spanish irritability?

The answer appears to be yes. On Monday, shares in EMI, the parent label of Virgin on which the Spice Girls record, fell, with dealers claiming that was a direct result of fears for the group's future.

A whole host of companies from Pepsi to Walker Crisps to Asda will also be worried. They are among the product endorsements that Fuller arranged for his charges. And, of course, the balance of payments might suffer a blip. The girls have already sold 19 million records worldwide, and their world tour is only just beginning.

The parting of company with 36-year-old Fuller, Svengali Spice, might yet return to haunt the girls. Feistiness and girl power had much to do with their disillusionment. Fuller had become too close to one of his charges, Emma Bunton, aka Baby Spice, and her colleagues resented that encroachment on their unity. He also worked them extremely hard and told them when they could go out and where they could go, which they came to resent as they became millionaires. Suspecting the bubble could burst at any time, Fuller also piled up product endorsements which made money but weren't good for the rock image.

But one industry source said last night: "These were factors. But the other factor was the mathematics. Fuller was on 20 per cent. Work out how much that leaves for each of the five girls. Less than 20 per cent. They have done their simple division. The golden rule in this industry is `don't earn more than the talent'."

With sales of their new album lower than expected, less than 250,000 compared to 750,000 for Oasis's latest offering, their imminent downfall is being predicted. Overkill in product endorsement, the over-10s losing interest, and potential fall-out among the band are all being mentioned.

But that is likely to be a premature analysis. In the short term, Virgin will now step in where Fuller so studiously kept them distant before. They will provide the necessary back-up from drivers to roadies and publicists. Then there is a film, Spiceworld The Movie opening on Boxing Day. It is certain to be a huge holiday attraction.

With such a young fan base, the Spice Girls were never destined to have too lengthy a flirtation with global fame. But as the parents of all pre- pubescent girls know, to talk of them being finished already is much exaggerated. They only have to look on the bedroom walls.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Arts and Entertainment
musicOfficial chart could be moved to accommodate Friday international release day
Sport
Wes Brown is sent-off
football
News
i100
Sport
Italy celebrate scoring their second try
six nations
Sport
Glenn Murray celebrates scoring against West Ham
footballWest Ham 1 Crystal Palace 3
Arts and Entertainment
Drake continues to tease ahead of the release of his new album
music
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Bookkeeper / Office Co-ordinator

£9 per hour: Recruitment Genius: This role is based within a small family run ...

Recruitment Genius: Designer - Print & Digital

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Design and marketing agenc...

Recruitment Genius: Quantity Surveyor

£46000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This property investment firm are lookin...

Recruitment Genius: Telesales / Telemarketing Executive - OTE £30k / £35k plus

£18000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company specialises provid...

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower