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Rating games for car-makers

Blue-chip brand: BMW's hard-won brand image has taken it to the top of the class.

Car brands rank very differently in two new annual industry ranking lists

General News logo3 May 2010


TWO annual industry reports released this week have produced disparate results for many of the world’s automotive brands.

According to the BrandZ Top 100 survey compiled by the market research company Millward Brown, BMW has overtaken Toyota as the world’s most valuable automotive brand, based on brand power and financial performance.

The BMW brand was valued at $US21.82 billion ($A23.46b) by Millward Brown, which measures brand equity based on interviews with more than one million consumers globally and an analysis of the financial and business performance of each company using data from Bloomberg and Datamonitor.

While BMW’s brand value was deemed to be down nine per cent on its result last year, Toyota's brand value was rated at $US21.77 billion ($A23.40b) – a decline of 27 per cent on last year.

Millward Brown global brand director Peter Walshe told Automotive News he believes Toyota will recover from its unprecedented global recall debacle, which affected its brand value from the end of 2009.

“It is likely that Toyota’s brand has suffered further in recent months, but it is a strong brand and is trying hard to overcome the damage through a major communications campaign. All of our evidence shows that strong brands are much more likely to recover from a crisis,” he said.

Overall, the report said the combined value of the six car manufacturers in the top 100 list had declined 15 per cent over the past 12 months due to falling sales in key markets such as the US and Europe – more than any other industry.

 center image “While several brands did well, the central story of the recession was more about which brands declined the least in sales and value,” said the report.

Honda was ranked third ahead of Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, Nissan, Ford, Volkswagen, Audi and Renault, with all top-ten brand values falling over the past year – except those of Ford, which boosted its brand value by 19 per cent to $US7 billion ($A7.5b), VW and Audi.

Millward Brown said Volkswagen, which increased its brand value by 20 per cent to just under Ford’s mark, and Audi, which improved two per cent to $US3.6 billion ($A3.87b), were “viewed as trustworthy brands with style, global distribution, German engineering and lower prices than prestige makes such as BMW and Mercedes”.

Mercedes-Benz was ranked as the world’s fourth most valuable brand behind Honda, which saw its brand value decline 11 per cent to $US13.7 billion ($A14.7b), while fifth-placed Porsche’s brand value fell 31 per cent to $12 billion ($A12.9b).

Google headed the top 100 list with brand value of $US114 billion ($A122.59) – followed by IBM at $US86 billion ($A92.48) and Apple at $US83 billion ($A89.25b).

Millward Brown said it expected Korean brands Hyundai and Kia to enter the top 10 next year, with several Chinese manufacturers also expected to post significant increases in brand value.

However, in another annual industry ranking released this week, Hyundai climbed eight places to outperform BMW, Toyota, Daimler, Nissan, Fiat, Suzuki, Porsche, Renault, Volvo, Peugeot-Citroen, Mitsubishi and Tata.

According to Forbes magazine’s Global 2000 list – which ranks the world’s leading companies based on an equal weighting of sales, profits, assets and market value – Hyundai is now the third-best automotive company globally after overtaking Toyota, which has dropped to 360th place overall, as well as the fifth-best South Korean-based company and the 188th largest company overall.

Hyundai hoisted itself from 245th in 2008 and 196th in 2009 in the Forbes Global 2000 list, but remains well short of the top-ranking automotive players, 58th-placed Ford and 86th-placed Honda.

Forbes says its list includes “the biggest, most powerful listed companies in the world”, which together account for $US30 trillion in revenues, $US1.4 trillion in profits, $US124 trillion in assets and $US31 trillion in market value.

“Forbes' ranking of the world's biggest companies departs from lopsided lists based on a single metric, like sales,” said Forbes. “Instead, we use an equal weighting of sales, profits, assets and market value to rank companies according to size.

“This year's list reveals the dynamism of global business. The rankings span 62 countries, with the US (515 members) and Japan (210 members) still dominating the list, but with a combined 33 fewer entries.”
Forbes Global 2000:
Rank Company Sales (billions) Profit (billions) Assets (billions) Mkt Value (billions)
58 Ford 118.31 2.72 194.85 41.80
86Honda 102.821.41 117.24 63.22
188Hyundai 63.950.69 81.45 21.84
197BMW 74.090.45 139.31 26.83
360Toyota 210.84-4.49 292.73 127.10
388Daimler 110.06-3.69 184.49 45.07
424Nissan 86.65-2.40 102.52 35.65
499Fiat 71.78-1.20 92.76 13.24
502Suzuki 30.860.28 20.59 11.62
524Porsche 81.31-3.60 300.45 8.88
530Renault 47.01-4.36 91.69 11.27
537Volvo 30.49-2.06 44.77 18.31
606Hyundai 11.110.84 8.30 12.46
661Peugeot 69.37-1.66 91.19 5.97
921Mitsubishi 20.27-0.56 11.44 7.99
972Mazda 26.04-0.73 17.50 4.66
1280Fuji Heavy Industries 14.85-0.72 11.69 3.57
2009 top car companies:
Toyota 200,991 -15.9%
Holden 119,568 -8.3%
Ford 96,501 -7.8%
Mazda 77,739 -2.6%
Hyundai 63,207 +39.2%
Mitsubishi 56,998 -6.1%
Nissan 52,901 -10.7%
Honda 41,443 -21.2%
Subaru 36,506 -5.2%
Volkswagen 30,087 +0.7%%

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