Trade princes, also known as merchant princes, are the five (more or less) rulers of the goblin world, each of whom run their own private army (or armies), hold lands around Azeroth, and collectively control the Trade Coalition.
A number of trade princes rule over the various goblin holdings around the world. Though the trade princes all live in the goblin island city of Undermine far from Kalimdor, they each control their own private armies and trade fleets. In turn, each controls cast rings of trade, mining, deforestation, slave rings, and poaching. The trade princes are the most cunning of their race and will stop at nothing to amass their fortunes and power, whether through legitimate means or via black markets and treachery. Goblins encountered on Kalimdor are either privateers or agents of the various trade princes of Undermine.
Officially, five trade princes exist, though one or two may be lurking about in the shadows. The goblins don’t elect their trade princes, nor are the positions hereditary; the trade princes killed, blackmailed, and schemed their way to the top. Together, these five goblins make the mercantile machine run, organizing the extensive and complex Trade Fleets.
One trade prince thought the Horde was destined to win the Second War and aligned with them. When the Horde lost, he left and went back to Kezan in dismay. From that point on, the goblins decided to remain completely neutral, if only to better exploit both sides.
After the Cataclysm reawakened a volcano on their home island, one of the goblins' trade princes realized that there was good money to be made in offering panicked goblins a 'ticket to safety' on his ship. His scheme was to take their life savings and then sell them into slavery. It was a clever plan and worked until it (and the ship) fell apart in a naval crossfire between an Alliance fleet and a lone Horde ship. The shipwrecked survivors washed ashore on the Lost Isles off the coast of Kalimdor. They soon discovered that the island's dense jungles harbored many mysteries and more than a few unpleasant surprises.
Recently, the goblins of Kezan have found a new enemy in the Alliance; unexpected and unprofitable encounters with this faction have driven certain trade princes from their comfortable neutrality. Reforging old pacts with their one-time allies, the goblins have been welcomed into the Horde with open arms.
Their hands are the moguls. Barons serve as magistrates for their land and holdings. Slavers run the slavery trade. Captains can run a single ship, though some run entire Trade Fleets. Admirals run more than one fleet. Traders and merchants work for the moguls and barons.
At the bottom are civilians and workers, and finally slaves.
Known trade princes
- Trade Prince Gallywix (Owner of the Bilgewater Cartel, tried to sell goblin evacuees from Kezan as slaves)
- Trade Prince Maldy (Gallywix's predecessor, former owner of Bilgewater Cartel)
- Trade Prince Steamwheedle (May or may not run the Steamwheedle Cartel)
- Trade Prince Donais (Unknown holdings, located at the Gallywix Pleasure Palace)
Relatives of trade princes
- A titan-made chalice held by the goblin trade princes in Undermine is one of the items Alexstrasza believes can rejuvenate the Sunwell. However, with the actions of M'uru, this scenario is unnecessary.