Best and worst bank brands in South Africa in 2018

The latest Brand Finance report on banking shows which South African banks have the most valuable brands in 2018.

According to the report “Brand Strength” is the efficacy of a brand’s performance on intangible measures, relative to its competitors. Factors that are considered include marketing investment, stakeholder equity, and the impact of those on business performance.

Each brand is assigned a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score out of 100, which feeds into the brand value calculation. Based on the score, each brand is assigned a corresponding rating up to AAA+ in a format similar to a credit rating.

As in previous years, Chinese and USA banks dominated the top 10 with the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC), China Construction Bank and Wells Fargo placing in first, second and third respectively.

No South African bank placed within the top 100, with First National Bank (FNB), the highest placed local bank at 141 on the list, closely followed by Absa at 143, and Standard Bank in 144.

Brand name Rank 2017 Rank 2018
First National Bank 157 141
ABSA 144 143
Standard Bank 130 144
Investec 166 177
Nedbank 171 182
Capitec 311 254
Rand Merchant Bank 389 377

Brand “South Africa”

While the country’s banking institutional strength remains one of its biggest point of international pride, South Africa as a whole has slipped down as a Brand according to Brand Finance’s latest country rankings.

South Africa dropped two places on the list to 43 in 2017; however, it recorded brand value of $222 billion – up 13% from 2016.

Jeremy Sampson, director, Africa at Brand Finance said a key factor in SA’s slippage is all the negative media coverage, not just locally but internationally, featuring the decline in ethical standards.

“(President Jacob) Zuma, the Guptas and their associates have created an environment where multinational companies have found it possible to push the local ethical boundaries, it would seem without the knowledge of their international parents, and so moving around huge amounts of money.

“Implicated to date are Bell Pottinger, KPMG and McKinsey, all working with government agencies. This all has a negative impact on the standing of the country brand. It is also a very dangerous situation, as further slippage increasingly becomes a red flag to existing and potential inward investment.

Read: Capitec gets S&P backing

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Best and worst bank brands in South Africa in 2018