For the first time in the history of Interbrand’s Best Global Brands report, there is a new #1 brand: Apple. Interbrand, a brand consultancy with global focus, publishes Best Global Brands on an annual basis, identifying and examining the top 100 most valuable global brands. With Apple claiming the top position this year, Google jumps to #2 and Coca-Cola, the brand that held the #1 position for 13 consecutive years, moves to #3. This year, the total value of all 100 Best Global Brands is USD $1.5 trillion — an 8.4 percent record increase over the total value of the 100 Best Global Brands in 2012.
Despite having its reputation tarnished by patent spats with Samsung and the Foxconn labor conditions scandal, the Apple brand proved to be resilient and emerged as not only the leader in this year’s Interbrand Best Global Brands report, but also a top riser. In addition to being resilient, Interbrand notes, Apple is also prescient – continually anticipating what consumers will want next. However, they caution that in order to maintain its #1 position over the next year, Apple will have to slow rival Samsung’s momentum in the mobile market and never lose sight of what it does best: “Think different.”
Apple has appeared on Interbrand’s Best Global Brands ranking since 2000, when the ranking debuted. In 2000, Apple then ranked #36 and had a brand value of USD $6.6 billion. Today, Apple’s brand value is USD $98.3 billion – almost 15 times the amount of its brand value in 2000. Interbrabd says Apple’s meteoric rise in brand value can be attributed to the way it has created a seamless omnichannel experience for customers. By keeping consumers at the center of everything it does, Apple is able to anticipate what they want next and break new ground in terms of both design and performance. With 72 million Macs in use and record-breaking sales of both the iPhone and iPad, Apple has made history by unseating Coca-Cola and becoming Interbrand’s most valuable global brand of 2013.
“Every so often, a company changes our lives – not just with its products, but with its ethos. This is why, following Coca-Cola’s 13-year run at the top of Best Global Brands, Apple now ranks #1,” says Jez Frampton, Interbrand’s Global Chief Executive Officer. “Tim Cook has assembled a solid leadership team and has kept Steve Jobs’ vision intact – a vision that has allowed Apple to deliver on its promise of innovation time and time again.”
Interbrand’s Best Global Brands methodology was the first of its kind to become ISO certified. It analyzes the many ways a brand benefits an organization, from delivering on customer expectations to driving economic value.
When determining the top 100 most valuable global brands, Interbrand examines three key aspects that contribute to a brand’s value:
• The financial performance of the branded products or service
• The role the brand plays in influencing consumer choice
• The strength the brand has to command a premium price, or secure earnings for the company
2013 OVERVIEW: A New Era of Leadership
In addition to identifying the top 100 most valuable global brands, this year’s Best Global Brands report also examines the evolving role of leadership as it relates to brands. Interbrand contends that leadership must now be shared. CEOs, CMOs and consumers all have the power to drive the value of the brands they manage or admire.
“In today’s global and social media-obsessed marketplace, brand leaders recognize the need to be highly collaborative,” notes Mr. Frampton. “The top 100 most valuable global brands are unlocking their value by participating, listening, learning, and sharing – and not just with leaders from within their organization, but with consumers too. Brands that learn to think differently about the role they play in consumers’ lives – and how to fulfill that role – have an opportunity to change the world in ways they never imagined.”
2013 NEW ENTRANTS: Discovery, Duracell, Chevrolet
Discovery (#70): The Discovery brand makes its debut on the Best Global Brands ranking after a record-breaking year. Discovery-branded channels are now available in 217 countries and territories and in 45 languages, reaching more than 1.3 billion subscribers outside the US. In the six years since David Zaslav took over as CEO, the company has grown from making an estimated USD $720 million in total profits to making USD $721 million from its international business alone. By developing programming like the Deadliest Catch series and its annual Shark Week, Discovery has managed to connect with viewers on a global scale. Such moves have positioned the brand as a leader in its sector and have earned it a firm position in Interbrand’s 2013 Best Global Brands report.
Duracell (#85): Duracell, a Procter & Gamble-owned brand, makes a comeback this year after falling off the Best Global Brands ranking in 2010. Until 2010, Duracell had appeared on the ranking each year since 2000 and, in 2009, was #85 with a brand value of USD $3.563 billion. Today, Duracell holds 25 percent of the global battery market share and is regarded as one of P&G’s leading brands. Trust in the brand remains high thanks to key marketing partnerships, including serving as the official battery of the American National Football League (NFL).
Chevrolet (#89): Accounting for roughly 50 percent of all vehicles GM sells globally, Chevrolet secures a firm position for the very first time on this year’s Best Global Brands ranking. Under the leadership of Global CMO Tim Mahoney and SVP/Global Head Alan Batey, Chevrolet has aligned its engineering, design, and retail operations behind a single vision and communications platform: “Find New Roads.” While the brand has gained momentum in the US market, Chevrolet is using this vision and communications platform to drive sales in markets such as China, India, and Thailand. If Chevrolet continues to successfully tailor its vehicles to meet local and global requirements, the brand will succeed in creating customers for life.
2013 TOP RISING BRANDS: Facebook, Google, Prada, Apple, Amazon
Facebook (#52, +43%): As the leading (and only) social media brand to claim a position on this year’s Best Global Brands ranking, Facebook has succeeded in boosting both revenue and earnings per share in the past year—and has surpassed Wall Street’s expectations in the process. Facebook also increased its global user base by 26 percent since its IPO over a year ago. Around the world, the brand continues to see an increase in users, with the Asia-Pacific region experiencing the largest growth. Facebook’s mobile users also grew by 51 percent in the past year and mobile ads are poised to account for more than half of the social media giant’s advertising dollars. With former Google executive Gary Briggs recently named the company’s first CMO and by acquiring companies like Instagram, Facebook’s growth is likely to continue for years to come.
Google (#2, +34%): Due to evolutionary changes to its core offerings (Search, Android, and Gmail) and new innovations like Google Glass and its self-driving car, Google’s brand value increased by 34 percent – making it this year’s #2 brand and the second top rising brand after Facebook. By continuing to move beyond search and by placing big bets on innovation, Google will impact the way its consumers live and behave worldwide – and increase the value of its brand in the process.
Prada (#72, +30%): The iconic Italian luxury fashion brand emerged as Interbrand’s third top riser this year with a brand value increase of 30 percent—just behind top-rising technology brands Facebook and Google. Prada’s increase in brand value reflects the organization’s ability to strike a harmonious (and profitable) balance between honoring its Italian heritage and producing innovative and cutting-edge designs. By effectively intertwining its digital and physical touchpoints and with the Prada Foundation’s support of the art world, Prada has been able to engage with its customers in more meaningful ways – and expand its global footprint in the process.
Apple, was discussed above.
Amazon (#19, +27%): With a brand value increase of 27 percent, Amazon is a top riser in this year’s Best Global Brands report. The e-commerce innovator continues to differentiate itself from rivals by taking on initiatives such as Amazon Appstore, which provides a comprehensive mobile experience for Google Android devices. Amazon has also expanded into new businesses such as TV-set-top boxes, original programming, 3-D smartphones, the Kindle line of e-book readers, and same-day grocery delivery service. Such initiatives, if successful, could mean Amazon will play an even greater and more holistic role in its consumers’ future retail experiences.
Technology dominates as the most valuable sector overall, with a combined brand value USD $443.154 billion
Here are the top 50:
Out of this year’s top 10 brands, seven hail from the tech sector. Furthermore, four tech brands make up this year’s top five rising brands: Facebook (#52, +43%), Google (#2, +34%), Apple (#1, +28%), and Amazon, (#19, +27%). Tech brands continue to dominate Interbrand’s Best Global Brands report – underscoring the fundamental and invaluable role they play in consumers’ lives. Due to its commitment to product innovation and its massive marketing spend, Samsung (#8, +20%) has surpassed Apple in smartphone sales and appears to be leading the tech sector in terms of connectivity and home automation. Samsung, which had one of the strongest increases of absolute brand value this year, continually anticipates what consumers will desire next. Despite the strong performance of many brands in this sector, a number of tech and consumer electronic brands did not rise, or even earn a position, on this year’s ranking. Most notably, one-time category leaders, Yahoo! and Blackberry fell off this year’s ranking entirely, while Nokia (#57, -65%) experienced the largest decline in brand value in the history of Best Global Brands. Nintendo (#67, -14%), and Dell (#61, -10%) also experienced a decline in brand value. In the fast-changing world of mobile, digital, and social media, these brands have struggled to articulate their respective attributes and deliver meaningful and seamless experiences across all platforms and touchpoints.
Luxury Brands Stay Strong
Despite the fact that China’s GDP growth has slowed, luxury brands performed solidly in this year’s Best Global Brands ranking. Seven of this year’s 100 most valuable brands hail from the luxury sector, and each increased its brand value by five percent or more. The top luxury brands of 2013 include: Louis Vuitton (#17, +6%), Gucci (#38, +7%), Hermes (#54, +23%), Cartier (#60, +26%), Prada (#72, +30%), Tiffany & Co. (#75, +5%), and Burberry (#77, +20%). Key drivers of growth for the luxury sector are likely due to a renewed sense of consumer confidence, increased store openings –particularly in the US and China — as well as the brands’ strong focus on linking the brick-and-mortar and digital brand experiences each has to offer.
Financial Services: Is Consumer Confidence On The Rise?
Eight of the 11 financial services brands in this year’s Best Global Brands ranking experienced an uptick in brand value. American Express leads the category at #23 and increased its brand value by 12 percent. The other top risers in the financial services sector include HSBC (#32, +7%), Goldman Sachs (#44, +12%), Citi (#48, +5%), AXA (#59, +5%), Allianz (#63, +8%), Visa (#74, +11%) and MasterCard (#97, +8%). And while many brands’ external messaging reflect a primary goal of “rebuilding trust,” studies confirm that the industry, as a whole, may already be well on its way. As of May 2013, the Chicago Booth/Kellogg School Financial Trust Index found Americans’ trust in the financial services sector had risen 13 percent since 2012. Still, some financial services brands like Morgan Stanley (#71, -21%) continue to struggle. In order to continue strengthening relationships with key constituencies, leaders of financial services brands must focus on clearly identifying their competitive advantages while ensuring transparency and consistency in their operations and interactions with stakeholders.
Automotive: Nine Automotive Brands Experience Double-digit Growth
14 of the top 100 most valuable global brands hail from the automotive sector, including Toyota (#10, +17%), Mercedes-Benz (#11, +6%), BMW (#12, +10%), Honda (#20, +7%), Volkswagen (#34, +20%), Ford (#42, +15%), Hyundai (#43, +20%), Audi (#51, +8%), Porsche (#64, +26%), Nissan (#65, +25%), Kia (#83, +15%), Chevrolet (#89, NEW), Harley-Davidson (#96, +10%), and Ferrari (#98, +6%). Of these 14 automotive brands, nine experienced double-digit percentage increases in terms of brand value. The auto industry has been on a steady path to recovery after experiencing production setbacks due to two natural disasters, both of which led to severe shortages of vehicles and parts. Nonetheless, US car sales jumped by more than 13 percent in 2012, the fastest growth rate in more than two decades. For the second consecutive year, Toyota is the top ranking brand within the automotive sector. The Japanese automaker, a fuel economy leader, also topped Interbrand’s 2013 Best Global Green Brands ranking and continues to demonstrate strength in driving customers to dealerships. While Toyota suffered a number of setbacks this year (including a boycott in China and its largest single recall ever), it quickly recovered and went on to reclaim its global sales leadership position—a testament to the automaker’s resilience, leadership position, and enduring appeal. Other automotive brands that experienced strong growth in terms of brand value were Porsche and Nissan. Porsche increased its brand value by 26 percent and Nissan increased its brand value by 25 percent. As previously noted, US automaker, Chevrolet, earned a position on the Best Global Brands ranking for the first time.
Best Global Brands 2013 Website
Detailed brand profiles, thought leadership articles, interactive charts, and interviews with brand leaders from around the world are available at: