The Emirates Auction Company set a record this weekend with the sale of the most expensive license plate ever. Reading simply “P 7,” the plate sold for a staggering 55 million UAE dirhams ($14.9 million USD at current exchange rates).
In a tweet, Emirates Auction said the sale had entered the Guinness World Records, but the buyer has chosen to remain anonymous. Given that the thing they bought is a form of government identification worn on the outside of one’s vehicle, that might be a hard form of anonymity to maintain.
The proceeds from the auctioned lot are going to support the “1 Billion Meals Endowment” campaign. Appropriately, the charitable cause seeks to establish the world’s largest Ramadan sustainable food aid endowment fund.
Because of the design of license plates in the United Arab Emirates, the plate looks like it has just the number “7” on it. Plates that appear to read as a single digit are valued for their simplicity, and the status they suggest.
The license plate “D 5,” for instance, sold for 33 million dirhams ($8.9 million USD) in the UAE in 2016. Its buyer, Balvinder Singh Sahni, told Bloomberg at the time that “it was always my dream to have a single-digit number.” He added that Dubai, where he worked, was a city of big personalities and that “everybody wants to show their status.”
Meanwhile, the “P 7” plate breaks a record that is 15 years old now. According to Guinness World Records, the previous record was set in 2008, when someone paid 52.2 million dirhams ($14.2 million USD) for a plate that read simply “1.” It was also sold by the Emirates Auction Company.