Millward Brown Announces a New Ranking of the World’s Most Powerful Brands
Microsoft Tops List on New Ranking of the World’s Most Powerful Brands
LONDON, UK, 3 April 2006 — A new ranking of the world’s most powerful brands was announced today by global marketing research firm Millward Brown. Developed by Millward Brown Optimor, the company’s specialist financial and ROI arm, the BRANDZ™ Top 100 Most Powerful Brands study utilised BRANDZ™ data that provides brand equity measures for more than 30,000 brands. The new brand ranking is unique because it is the first to combine consumer research with public financial data to measure the contributions brands make to the bottom line. Additionally, it is the only ranking to quantify consumer sentiment about a brand’s momentum and future prospects, and the first to focus on “market facing” brands as opposed to corporate brands.
BRANDZ™ Top 10 (value in $million):
1. Microsoft – 62,039
2. GE – 55,834
3. Coca-Cola – 41,406
4. China Mobile – 39,168
5. Marlboro – 38,510
6. Wal-Mart – 37,567
7. Google – 37,445
8. IBM – 36,084
9. Citibank – 31,028
10. Toyota – 30,201
Source: Millward Brown Optimor (including data from BRANDZ™, Euromonitor International, and Bloomberg)
The ranking shows that Microsoft is the world’s most valuable brand at $62,039 million followed by GE ($55,834), Coca-Cola ($41,406), and China Mobile ($39,168). Millward Brown Optimor also found that:
- Europe leads the world in luxury brands: Louis Vuitton ranked (24), Mercedes (28), Porsche (44), Chanel (75) and Cartier (82). The study shows that demand for luxury goods is growing rapidly, fuelled by the rise in global wealth, and the increase of “super-affluent” consumers in developing countries.
- Chinese brands are gaining global power: The rise of Chinese brands such as China Mobile, which was (4) in the ranking — and rapidly emerging brands like Lenovo — reflects both the size and growth of the Chinese market as well as the ability of these companies to run global operations.
- Retail brands are becoming a more important factor in driving consumer shopping behaviour: Many retailers show strong brand contributions, which in some cases are higher than those of the products they sell. This proves that shopping is a “branded” experience e.g., Wal-mart ranked (6), Tesco (30), eBay (38), and Amazon (78), and puts retailers in a position of power to exert pressure on suppliers of branded products.
- New economy, new business models and new money: New business models have enabled new brands such as Starbucks, ranked (48), and Zara (87) to establish their positions not only in the market but in consumers’ minds — creating a strong foundation to help them earn lead positions among “old” brands. With the increasing acceptance of digital lifestyles, brands that enable customers to lead them such as Google ranked (7) and eBay are growing fast. The challenge here is continual innovation.
“This is the first study that goes beyond financial data and ‘expert opinion’ to include in-market insights about a brand’s strengths and momentum from potential customers,” said Andy Farr, Executive Director at Millward Brown Optimor and lead researcher on the study. “It proves that investing in brands is key to a company’s long-term success.”
Joanna Seddon, EVP, who heads up Millward Brown Optimor globally added: “We’ve seen that strong brands can create very real financial value in many ways. The best brands drive revenues and profits, reduce risk and cost of entry into new markets and attract talented staff to companies.”
Commenting on the launch of the BRANDZ™ Top 100 ranking, Bob Meyers, global CEO of Millward Brown said: “We have built our organisation by helping clients make better brand decisions. While this ranking is interesting in itself, it is important to remember that it is even more useful when it leads to business decisions. With the BRANDZ™ Top 100 ranking method, marketing and finance executives can better understand and leverage the value of their brands to grow their businesses and improve their Return on Marketing Investments”
About Millward Brown:
Millward Brown (www.millwardbrown.com), one of the world’s top 10 marketing research organisations, is recognised as a leading authority on advertising, marketing communications, media, and brand equity research. Through the use of an integrated suite of validated research techniques – both qualitative and quantitative – Millward Brown helps clients build strong brands and services. Millward Brown has more than 70 offices in 45 countries and also has several specialised global practices including Millward Brown Optimor (a global unit focused on helping clients maximise the returns on their brand and marketing investments), a Global Media Practice (a global media effectiveness unit), Millward Brown Precis (a global PR measurement practice), Dynamic Logic (an online research firm specialising in measuring advertising and marketing effectiveness), and KMR (provider of global Target Group Index [TGI] the world’s leading media and market profiling tool). Millward Brown is part of Kantar, WPP’s insight, information and consultancy arm.
About the BRANDZ™ Top100 ranking:
Developed for WPP’s operating companies by Millward Brown Optimor the BRANDZ™ ranking of the world’s Top 100 most powerful brands is based on data from the BRANDZ™ database. The BRANDZ™ study, conducted annually by Millward Brown, measures the brand equity of more than 30,000 global “consumer facing” brands, and interviews 650,000 consumers globally. Consumer perception of a brand is a key input in determining brand value because brands are a combination of business performance, product delivery, clarity of positioning, and leadership. In addition to utilising BRANDZ™ data, the Top 100 ranking assesses Brand Value (using market and consumer research, in combination with financial data from Bloomberg and Euromonitor International, to calculate and break-down intangible earnings), Brand Contribution (the brand’s effectiveness in driving business earnings), and Brand Momentum (an index of expected near-term brand growth). The ranking takes into account regional variations since even for truly global brands measures of brand contribution might differ substantially across countries. Coverage is significantly broader than existing rankings and provides detailed evaluations within market sectors that allow marketers to compare their brands with their competitors.