Mobile operator MTN is the only South African based company to make the annual list of the top 500 most valuable global brands as published by brand evaluation firm, Brand Finance.
However, its not all good news for MTN, as the company tumbled down the global list in 2015, to 302nd position from 240th in 2014.
MTN brand value in US dollars slipped to $4.672 million with a brand rating of AA+, from $5.381 million and a brand rating of AAA- in 2015.
MTN fell to 38th in the telecoms sector globally, from 26th in 2014, but retained its ranking as the best brand in Africa.
The power of a brand is just one component of Brand Finance’s analysis. The company combines the information on a brand’s strength with financial data, to calculate its commercial value.
When brand values are calculated, Apple comes out on top, beating rival technology firm Samsung,and search giant, Google. Microsoft and telecoms firm AT&T round out the top five.
“Critics have been silenced by the success of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Consumers have snapped latest models in their droves, helping Apple set records for quarterly profits ($18bn) and company value ($710bn), Brand Finance noted.
“The Apple brand is worth US$128 billion. That value is huge not just in its own terms but also as a proportion of Apple’s record-breaking corporate valuation. It goes to show how valuable brands are as business assets and how important it is to manage them well,” said Brand Finance CEO, David Haigh.
Most powerful brand
According to Brand Finance’s Brand Strength Index, Danish toy maker Lego is the world’s most ‘powerful brand’ with an index score 93.4 of 100.00, thanks largely to the success of the Lego movie.
2014 champion Ferrari, slid down the rankings with an index score of 89.6, behind brands including Red Bull and Rolex.
“Ferrari remains a very strong brand but its power is slowly diminishing. It has now gone several years without an F1 title and last season struggled even to mount a challenge. The sheen of glory from its 1990s golden era is beginning to wear thin,” Brand Finance said.
“Ferrari is still in a strong position and its brand value has actually increased 18% this year to $4.7 billion. The new strategy to capitalise on the brand will certainly drive short term value but over-exploitation risks lasting damage,” Haigh said.
Fastest growing brands
Twitter is the fastest growing brand; it has almost tripled its brand value in a year, increasing from $1.5 billion in early 2014 to $4.4 billion now, according to Brand Finance.
Fellow tech giants Baidu and Facebook have also grown strongly, by 161% and 146% respectively.
“The three appear to be more effectively managing the transition to mobile advertising than other tech players such as Google, boosting expectations of the financial potential of their brands.”