Amazon grows 41% to retain top spot as Most Valuable Global Retail Brand in the 2017 BrandZ™ Top 100
Amazon and Alibaba add physical presence to technology ecosystems; Walmart and Home Depot invest in digital
EMBARGO: 00:01 BST, 6 June 2017 – London, UK – Amazon has retained its title as the world’s most valuable retail brand in the 2017 BrandZTM Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands ranking, released today by WPP and Kantar Millward Brown.
The brand was also the fastest-growing performer in the BrandZ Retail Top 20, up +41% ($40.1bn), year-on-year, thanks to its continuing innovation. Amazon has made online shopping faster and more convenient via initiatives such as Amazon Prime Pantry and Amazon Prime Now. It also built its reputation for rethinking all forms of retail with concepts for check-out free stores where payment is via an app.
Innovations such as Amazon Echo and Alexa combined with moves to develop the benefits of subscribing to Prime have also reinforced the power of its technology ecosystem, strengthening loyalty and customer satisfaction.
The opportunities presented by bricks and mortar has also been seized by Alibaba, China’s e-commerce leader, which retained its no.2 spot in the BrandZ Top 20 retail brands with a brand value of $59.1bn. The company entered a partnership with Bailian Group, which operates almost 5,000 stores in China. The move also expands the group’s ecosystem, enabling Alibaba to link its online e-commerce platforms, Tmall and Taobao, and its Alipay payment function, with Bailian.
Alibaba is also building a global footprint and is now a leading automotive seller in Russia, according to Kantar Retail, and is investigating the establishment of a logistics centre in Bulgaria, and a distribution centre in Croatia.
China’s expertise in e-commerce is also reflected by the presence of JD.com, in the retail Top 10 for the first time, with a brand value $10.7bn, up +3%. JD.com has established a partnership with Walmart, giving it additional scale.
The success of the e-commerce giants helped retail become the fastest-growing sector in this year’s BrandZ ranking, up +14% from 2016. It’s a long-term trend with the brand value of e-commerce players collectively rising by more than +380% in the last 12-years, while traditional retailers have lost -23% of their value overall.
As the largest and definitive brand-building platform in the world, BrandZ reflects the brands that are integrated into today’s consumer lifestyles. It is the only brand valuation study to combine interviews with over three million consumers globally with analysis of the financial and business performance of each company (using data from Bloomberg and Kantar Worldpanel).
Rivals in the Retail Top 20 brands are intensifying their digital efforts. Home improvement specialist Home Depot (the no.3 brand, up +11% at $40.3bn) invested in digital, leveraging the size and product range of its warehouse stores to offer customers a variety of ways to buy, including click and collect.
Walmart (the no.4 brand, growing +2% to $27.9bn) acquired several niche e-commerce apparel retailers, as well as Jet.com, an e-commerce player with a track record of encouraging consumers to spend more online through low pricing and letting them know when they can save money on certain purchases. As well as extending Walmart’s online business, the moves broadened its customer base with shoppers that are younger and more urban than its traditional consumer.
The rise of e-commerce has challenged traditional retail brands to deliver new forms of consumer convenience. Target (no.14 at $8.7bn) has implemented a store remodelling programming designed to offer shoppers routes round its stores based on the purpose of their trip. Many grocery sector players have also adapted their customer focus; Carrefour (no.17 at $6.8bn) has deployed a range of smaller convenience stores to complement its hypermarkets.
David Roth, CEO EMEA and Asia, The Store WPP, said, ““The pace of retail was always fast and furious but in the 12 years since the BrandZ rankings began the rules of the game have radically changed. Walmart has been overtaken as the world’s most valuable retail brand by Amazon and two Chinese e-commerce brands are in the Top 10. E-commerce has radically reshaped the retail and brand landscape and these changes are set to accelerate. Retail brands that don’t deliver seamless, unique customer centric experience online and offline will continue to suffer. The future of retail is not what it used to be.”
The BrandZ Top 20 Most Valuable Retail Brands 2017
|Rank 2017||Brand||Brand value 2017 ($M)||Brand value change||Rank 2016||Rank in global Top 100|
|3||The Home Depot||40,327||11%||3||24|
Summary of headlines from the 2017 BrandZTM Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands:
- Amazon is now one of the world’s Top 5 most valuable brands. It rose to no.4 in the Top 100 after increasing its brand value +41% to $139.3bn. The retail giant has continue to focus on its technology ecosystem honed to meet multiple consumer needs, as well as introducing new artificial intelligence-enabled services including grocery delivery and personal assistant Alexa.
- Google, Apple and Microsoft retain the top three positions, growing their brand value +7% to $245.6bn, +3% to $234.7bn and +18% to $143.2bn respectively over the past year, while Facebook, at no. 5, grew +27% to $129.8bn.
- Strong brands continue to outperform their competitors. Compared against key benchmarks over the past 12 years, the portfolio of BrandZ Top 100 brands grew 50% more in value than the S&P 500 and 3.5 times the MSCI All Country World Index.
- Consumer-centric technology ecosystems are making brands indispensable. Consumers can increasingly carry out a variety of activities, from online shopping to watching television, under the banner of one brand and across multiple devices. This convenience for consumers also allows the most powerful brands to minimise the risk of consumer switching.
- New brands are increasingly born global, allowing them to grow rapidly. Technology allows businesses to provide their offerings globally from day one. This is fostering a new breed of entrepreneur, who is not restricted by the geographical or sector boundaries that have traditionally limited the speed and scale of growth.
- Traditional non-tech brands are adopting technology to innovate and increase consumer appeal. Fastest riser Adidas has introduced 3D printing to produce its footwear, for example, while fast food brand Domino’s Pizza offers customers a real-time tracker for their order.
- The BrandZ Top 100 is getting younger. The average age of a brand is now 67 years, compared with 84 years in 2006, reflecting the entry of the newer technology brands and the emergence of brand China.
- Brands that make it clear how they will make consumers’ lives better, such as Huawei and Toyota, have grown three times more on average over the last 12 years (the top third grew +170% compared to the bottom third which was +57%).
- Great communications puts a brand at an advantage. The top third in terms of strongest communications (including McDonald’s and L’Oréal Paris) have grown 196% in value, compared with 47% for the bottom third. This is because they have successfully amplified the difference they have built.
The BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands report and rankings, and a great deal more brand insight for key regions of the world and 14 market sectors, are available online here. The Global report, rankings, charts, articles and more can also be found via the BrandZ app. The BrandZ app also contains the same features and functionality for all BrandZ regional reports and is free to download for Apple IOS and all Android devices from www.brandz.com/mobile or search for BrandZ in the respective iTunes or Google Play app stores.