Top 100 global brands: Apple overtakes Google

09/05/2011

Apple has overtaken Google as the 'world's most valuable brand', bringing an end to four years of dominance by the search giant, according to new research. The annual 'BrandZ' report from WPP-owned research agency Millward Brown, calculated brand power using a combination of quantitative customer research and financial analysis. According to the report, the value of Apple's brand grew to $153.5bnn while Google's brand slipped 2% to $111.4bn.

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The value of Apple's brand has increased by 84% over the last 12 months, driven by the word's infatuation with the iPad, the first genuinely successful tablet computer, and continuing growth in its iPhone and iPod brands.

Google was the only brand in the top ten to see its value slip.

"I would say the big story to me is the tail of the tablet. If you see just how much Apple's brand value has gone up, the iPad is large part of that," said Eileen Campbell, CEO of Millward Brown.

Of the top 10 brands in Monday's report, six were technology and telecoms companies: Google at number two, IBM at number three, Microsoft at number five, AT&T at number seven and China Mobile at number nine.

McDonald's rose two places to number four, as fast food became the fastest-growing category, Coca-Cola slipped one place to number six, Marlboro was also down one to number eight, and General Electric was number 10.

Nineteen of the top 100 brands came from emerging markets, up from 13 last year.

Facebook entered the top 100 at number 35 with a brand valued at $19.1 billion, while Chinese search engine Baidu rose to number 29 from 46.

Toyota reclaimed its position as the world's most valuable car brand, as it recovered from a bungled 2010 product recall. The survey was carried out before the March earthquake that caused massive disruption to Japanese supply chains.

“The importance of brand for global business success is becoming increasingly significant,” said David Roth at WPP. “In the last year, the global economy shifted from recovery to real growth, the combined value of all brands in the Top 100 ranking has risen by 64 percent since 2006 and is now worth $2.4 trillion. Strong brands, while not immune to the vicissitudes of the market, are more protected, prepared, resourceful and resilient.”

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*The Brand Value of Coca-Cola includes Lites, Diets and Zero

“Our brand valuations are a powerful measure of an organization’s ability to create real and lasting value for shareholders.” said Eileen Campbell, CEO of brand research company Millward Brown. “By nurturing its brand and constantly innovating, Apple is able to command a high price premium and weather economic turbulence, providing a global business success story that other brands can learn from.”

“Business leaders can embrace brand management as a critical competency for building long-term financial value,” she added. “Compared with an overall improvement of 13 percent in the world’s equity markets during 2010, the best brands grew their value 30 percent faster.

Other key findings highlighted in this year’s research report include:

* One in five brands is from the BRICs: This year, 19 brands come from emerging markets compared to two in 2006 and 13 in 2010. The growing presence of brands from BRICs in this global ranking highlights the expanding purchasing power of people in these countries. While many of these brands are buoyed by the size of their local customer base, many more now have international ambition including Petrobras in Brazil (No. 61 in the ranking with a brand value of $13.4 billion); ICICI Bank in India (No. 53 and worth $14.9 billion) and China’s largest search engine Baidu. Now listed on the NASDAQ index, Baidu has a brand value of $22.5 billion and moves up 46 places in the ranking to number 29. Despite these successes, consumers in the BRIC regions continue to favor Western brands. Louis Vuitton, for example, (for which Brazil is its second-largest market) benefited from the new energy and confidence in the BRICs region. Its 23 percent growth in brand value to $24.3 billion has helped this luxury retailer achieve 26th place in the ranking, a three-spot increase from 2010.

* Vodafone UK’s Most Valuable Brand worth $43.7 billion and 12th in the global ranking. The telecoms operator is followed by HSBC, whose brand is worth $22.6 billion (28th in the global ranking), Tesco (worth $21.9 billion and 31st in the global ranking), Shell (worth $15.2 billion and 51st globally) and BP (64th globally and worth $12.6 billion.

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* Heritage brands stay relevant in a technology age: Coca-Cola (No. 6), GE (No. 10), IBM (No. 3) and McDonald’s (No. 4), stand out in this study of global brand strength as brands that have survived for more than 50 years. Leadership, strategy and tactics aside, what all of these companies have in common is their use of brand to remain relevant to consumers and drive global business success.

* Technology and telecom brands dominate the ranking: Technology brands, which make up one-third of the Top 100 brands, continue to demonstrate their relevance in our daily lives. While Apple leads the ranking, it is followed in second place by Google, with a brand value of $111.5 billion, and IBM in third place with a brand value of $100.9 billion. Facebook makes its debut in the Top 100 ranking this year at No. 35 with the highest increase in brand value, 246 percent, making the brand worth $19.1 billion. Online retailer Amazon also edged past Walmart to become the No. 1 retail brand and 14th overall, with a 37 percent rise in brand value to $37.6 billion.

* Fast food, luxury and technology brands lead brand value appreciation: Each of the 13 market sectors covered in this study grew in value over the last year. Fast food lead the sector growth (22 percent) followed by luxury (19 percent) and technology (18 percent). The oil and gas sector experienced the slowest rate of growth (1 percent).

* Tech and convergence create brand interdependencies: Brands are ever more dependent on their use of technology to win consumers’ hearts and minds. The brand values of Burberry, Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Coca-Cola all benefited from their use of technology for example by harnessing social media and apps. At the same time, the dependencies demonstrated in the physical world between applications, devices and operating platforms are creating similar branded interdependencies. Brands that are aware of the risks can leverage these associations to drive value and growth.

* Toyota reclaims position as most valuable car brand demonstrating the power of strong brands to recover from the most fundamental challenges to product efficacy and reputation. Toyota’s brand, which is rated by consumers as “great value,” rose 11 percent to $24.1 billion.

%* The total value of the top 100 brands rose by 17 percent to $2.4 trillion, as the global economy shifted to growth.

The BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands study values market-facing brands, i.e. brands which directly generate revenues and profits through the sale of goods and services to customers. Corporate brands such as Procter & Gamble, Unilever and Nestlé which have significant value especially with the investment community, are not included.

The ranking values brands from 13 different categories, ranging from apparel, beer, cars, to fast food, financial services, insurance, luxury goods, telecom providers, oil & gas companies, personal care, retail, soft drinks, and technology. Through extensive coverage of developed and emerging markets, it provides insight into the sources and drivers of brand value, both today and in the future

To view the full report, visit: www.millwardbrown.com/brandz

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