Life After Ben ElliotFor Russian Luxury Concierge Company
Sam Bright reveals that the Russian firm that formerly provided business services for Conservative chair Ben Elliot is now operating independently
The resignation of Conservative Party co-chair Oliver Dowden this morning has left one man at the top of the Tory tree: luxury lifestyle consultant Ben Elliot.
Elliot is the co-founder of Quintessentially, a “luxury lifestyle management service” that offers everything from travel advice to real estate consultancy and personal shopping. Elliot, who is the nephew of Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, has previously been accused of offering access to Prince Charles in exchange for a lucrative Quintessentially membership.
Earlier this year, the company was scrutinised for offering services to clients in Russia, amid Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. In response, the company said that it had closed its Russia office and Russian language website. A company spokesman told the BBC that it was “in effect out of Russia”.
Multiple Twitter users have suggested that a new website has been set up, called Konsierge, that directly replicates the now-deleted Quintessentially Russia website.
For example, this is a screenshot from the Konsierge website:
And this is a screenshot from the Quintessentially website on 31 July last year:
The phone numbers of the two firms match, as do their addresses.
We approached Konsierge and Quintessentially for comment, receiving a response from Konsierge Managing Director Kirill Levadny, who has previously been described in the press as Quintessentially’s “Moscow chief”.
Levadny told us that Konsierge held a franchise agreement with Quintessentially for 10 years, which was revoked in March this year. This was “much to our regret I have to say as we have had a good cooperation with [Quintessentially] and it is a strong brand on the luxury market,” he said.
“Mr Elliot has never been a co-owner of the Russian company. Myself and my wife are the sole beneficiaries,” Levadny added. “After the license was revoked we continued our operation under our other brand, Konsierge… [Quintessentially] was never our only business in Russia so we moved on without any significant impact.”
In effect, the former Russian arm of Quintessentially is still functioning amid the war, though it is no longer affiliated with Elliot’s aristocrat life support firm.
Quintessentially and the Conservative Party were approached for comment.