Thursday, 09 June 2016 02:35

Google dislodges Apple from top spot in brand value rankings Featured

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Apple has been shunted to second behind Google in the rankings for the top 100 most valuable brands in the world this year released on Wednesday by WPP and Milward Brown.

The two giants of the Internet and technology world swapped positions. Google jumped back to the number 1 spot from 2nd last year with a brand value for 2016 of US$229.1 billion while Apple — number 1 in 2015  relinquished its position to Google, with a drop in brand value to US$228.4 billion.

Google’s climb back to the top of the rankings represented an increase of 32% in brand value  its best ever  with Apple down by 8%.

Elspeth Cheung, global brandZ valuation director at Millward Brown, says Google has thrived thanks to continual innovation, increased revenue from advertising, and growth in its cloud business.

By contrast, Cheung says Apple tends to follow a trend of bi-annual surges of innovation along with keeping this pipeline secret. “This, combined with the lost momentum in sales for the Apple Watch as well as the lack of a new market-defining handset, is reflected in the 2016 valuation for last year’s no.1.”

These latest brand value rankings for this year reveal that for the second consecutive year, Facebook was the technology brand that rose the fastest in the BrandZ Top 100, growing 44% to US$102.6 billion, a value that Cheung says pushed the social network into the top 10 for the first time.

“This was thanks to adding new features such as Friends’ Day, Disaster Alert and live video broadcast to its community platform, as well as attracting new publisher content. It is also proving highly successfully in monetising the move to mobile, attracting significant spend via its mobile ad platforms.”

But, on a not so positive note, overall it’s been a less than triumphant year for the tech sector.

The WWP/Milward Brown report reveals that after 2015’s 24% rise in total value for the Top 20 tech brands, 2016 has seen just a 6% rise.

According to Cheung, as a rule, hardware companies have performed less well with new areas such as wearables, watches and the Internet of Things (IoT) yet to deliver either financial or brand benefits.

But, one company that Cheung notes has defied the hardware-service divide is Huawei, the “low-cost smartphone manufacturer”, which first entered the tech Top 20 last year. It has shown 22% growth to US$18.7 billion following its emergence as the leading Chinese smartphone maker in China, and becoming a key rival for Apple in the rest of the world.

“This market leadership also allows Huawei to strengthen its premium position by raising prices.”

Another success story revealed in the report, that Cheung says is indicative of future trends, is streaming TV service Netflix, which has been listed in the tech Top 20 for the first time with a brand value of US$9.2 billion.

Cheung also stresses that the consumer perception that the B2B brands are less innovative — “even if that isn’t always the case”  has seen the proportion of total value in the technology Top 20 that is contributed by B2B brands decline from 56% in 2006 to just 26% in this year’s listing.

“There is a clear imperative for tech brands to showcase their innovation pipeline both in order to convince consumers that they are working hard to change their consumers’ lives but also to allow investors to anticipate future growth more accurately. With complex supply chains, secrecy is no longer possible and Google has benefitted from its corporate restructure which allows it to better showcase the innovations beyond its core search business,” Cheung said.

Rank 2016

Brand

Brand Value 2016 ($M)

Brand Value Change

Rank 2015

1

Google

229,198

32%

2

2

Apple

228,460

-8%

1

3

Microsoft

121,824

5%

3

4

Facebook

102,551

44%

6

5

IBM

86,206

-8%

4

6

Tencent

84,945

11%

5

7

SAP

39,023

2%

8

8

Baidu

29,030

-27%

7

9

Accenture

22,813

13%

12

10

HP

21,387

-7%

9

11

Samsung

19,490

-10%

11

12

Oracle

19,489

-10%

10

13

Huawei

18,652

22%

16

14

Intel

18,632

1%

13

15

Cisco

14,508

-10%

14

16

LinkedIn

12,314

1%

17

17

Adobe

10,440

41%

20

18

Salesforce

9,914

N/A

NEW

19

Netflix

9,289

N/A

NEW

20

Sony

8,150

2%

19

 


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired in 2020. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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