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Monday, May 09, 2011
Apple Becomes The World's Most Valuable Brand

Registering a 84 percent increase in value over the past year, Apple has emerged as the most valuable brand in the world, ending the four-year reign of Google at the top of the table, according to WPP company Millward Brown Optimo.

The Apple brand, as calculated by Millward Brown Optimor, has increased in value by 859 percent since 2006 and now stands at $153.3 billion. Other key findings in the study are that during the economic recovery of the last year, the combined value of all the brands in the top 100 has risen by 17 percent and is now worth $2.4 trillion. In terms of geography, according to the 2011 BrandZ study, 19 of the Top 100 brands now originate in "BRICs" markets, versus only two in 2006.

"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."

The BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands study, commissioned by WPP and conducted by Millward Brown Optimor, identifies and ranks the world's most valuable 100 brands by their dollar value, an analysis based on financial data combined with consumer measures of brand equity.

This year's research report found that technology and telecom brands dominate the ranking: 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.

The report also found that 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, Millward Brown Optimor said. "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."

Heritage brands also staid 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.

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.

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