Rebus return earns author Ian Rankin £2.5m

Ian Rankin has enjoyed a bumper year. Picture: Toby Williams
Ian Rankin has enjoyed a bumper year. Picture: Toby Williams
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REBUS author Ian Rankin boosted the value of his personal company to more than £2.5 million last year, new figures have revealed.

The Merchiston-based writer saw the coffers of his firm increase as royalties rolled in from the comeback of the hard-bitten Edinburgh detective.

New figures from John Rebus Limited, named in honour of his famous creation, show that it had total assets of £3.3m and made a profit of £2.5m for the 12 months up to April last year.

The accounts, which have just been filed at Companies House, reveal Rankin, 55, has an investment portfolio worth £1,410,034.

The firm is valued at £2,506,666 in the accounts – more than £200,000 up on the previous year’s figure of £2,302,980.
The accounts also show that Rankin bought an investment property during the year for £640,000.

Rankin, who has sold more than 20 million books, took a “sabbatical year” in 2014 after a busy spell which saw him bring back Detective Inspector Rebus following a five-year absence.

Last November his 20th Rebus novel, Even Dogs In The Wild, was published.

Rankin set up John Rebus Limited in 2001 to channel his earnings from his books.

Fife-born Rankin is a director of the company along with his wife, Miranda Harvey.

He declined to comment on the latest earnings, but in a recent interview about his finances, Rankin told how he sometimes regretted setting up the company as it took up a lot of his time.

He said: “I have possibly thought that becoming a limited company wasn’t a great idea.

“My accountant persuaded me to go down that route. It is fine but it means more meetings, more bureaucracy, more rigmarole, and more papers to fill in.”

The author also scoffed at claims that his total personal wealth was around £25m.

He added: “Where do they get their figures from? I have no idea where they get that figure. I doubt I am worth even half of that.

“It took a good 12-14 years, and many books, before the money became a happy factor of my writing career.

“If you think, my first novel was published back in 1986 and for that I had been given an advance of the grand sum of £200. I was pretty much 40 or in my early-40s before I earned my first million.

“I am more relaxed now about spending money. I used to be someone who used to think twice at taking a taxi somewhere if you could walk the same distance in 45 minutes.

“My wife and I recently booked ourselves on to first-class flights for a holiday to South Africa, which was a nice luxury.”

The writer also revealed he had invested in a stocks and shares portfolio, investment trusts and had a pension.