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Microsoft Brand Holds Its Value; Apple and Google Jump to Top

When it comes to the value of global brands, Microsoft held steady in 2013 even as Google and Apple vaulted ahead, according to a widely watched report on brand value.

Brand consultancy Interbrand released its 14th annual Best Global Brands report on Monday. It valued Apple's brand at $98 billion for first place. It was the first time anyone displaced Coca-Cola for first place in the history of the report. But Apple wasn't the only company beating Coca-Cola this time around. Google, valued by Interbrand at $93 billion, also beat out the soft-drink maker, valued at $79 billion. 

IBM came in fourth at almost $79 billion and Microsoft rounded out the top five with a $59 billion value.

[Click on image for larger view.] The top 28 brands in Interbrand's list. Download full PDF here.

Apple and Google also rode to the top on a rocket, with their calculated brand value going up 28 percent and 34 percent, respectively, compared to the 2012 results. Coca-Cola, IBM and Microsoft all had brand values going up between 2 percent and 4 percent.

To calculate brand value, Interbrand says it uses a combination of the financial performance, the brand's role "in influencing consumer choice" and the brand's "strength to command a premium price."

Tech was well represented at the top of the list. In addition to holding four of the top five spots, the tech sector held two more top 10 slots -- Samsung and Intel. Those two companies, however, were on different trajectories. Samsung had a 20 percent increase in brand value, while Intel had a 5 percent drop, according to Interbrand.

Other big gainers on the list from tech were Facebook, with a 43 percent increase in brand value for 52nd on the list, and Amazon, with a 27 percent gain for the 19th spot.

Being a top-five brand was a plus for Microsoft, but the report showed a strongly negative trend for Microsoft's recent acquisition, Nokia. With a drop in value of 65 percent to No. 57 on the list, Nokia experienced the largest decline in brand value in the history of Best Global Brands, according to Interbrand.

Even there, it arguably could be worse: Yahoo and BlackBerry fell of the list entirely.

Posted by Scott Bekker on September 30, 2013