May 9, 2011

Apple Now Considered Most Valuable Brand

The annual BrandZ report from Millward Brown on the 100 most valuable brands was released today and of the top 10, six were technology and telecoms companies.

Apple overtook Google's 4-year reign to be in the top spot. Google dropped to second place, IBM was listed at number three and Microsoft in fifth place. AT&T and China Mobile finished seventh and ninth respectively, reports Reuters.

The iPhone and iPad creator enjoys an estimated brand value of $153 billion this year. Apple's portfolio of must-have goods propelled it last year past Microsoft to become the world's most valuable technology company.

Peter Walshe, global brands director of Millward Brown, says Apple's meticulous attention to detail, along with an increasing presence in corporate environments, have allowed it to behave differently from other consumer-electronics makers.

"Apple is breaking the rules in terms of its pricing model," Walshe told Reuters by telephone. "It's doing what luxury brands do, where the higher price the brand is, the more it seems to underpin and reinforce the desire. Obviously, it has to be allied to great products and a great experience, and Apple has nurtured that."

Other technology company rankings include Facebook's first entry on 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.

Other non-tech brands on the list include McDonald, which 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 ten, The Telegraph reports.

The top vehicle manufacturer was Toyota, 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.

To come up with these rankings, Millward Brown takes as a starting point the value that companies put on their own main brands as intangibles in their earnings reports. This is combines that with the perceptions of more than 2 million consumers in relevant markets around the world whom it surveys over the course of the year, and then applies a multiple derived from the company's short-term future growth prospects.


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