World's top three brands are now: Google, Apple, Microsoft
Brand value is a pretty important thing, and something that is pretty difficult to calculate, but Brand Finance, a London-based company, wants to do just that. The company uses a number of metrics including cashflow in order to put a value on a company's trademark and other intellectual property. And, according to those numbers, Apple is now the number 2 most valuable brand in the world, behind Google and just ahead of Microsoft.
Apple and Exxon trading the top spot. As far as brand value though, Apple has been surging, jumping from a $19.8 billion brand valuation in 2010, to a $29.5 billion valuation in January 2011, and as of September 2011 stood at $39.3 billion. That valuation is enough to move Apple up from #7 on the list to #2, just ahead of Microsoft, which is valued at $39 billion. Microsoft has slipped from the start of the year, when it was valued at $42.8 billion. But, even with that big jump by Apple, it wasn't enough to unseat the champion: Google. Google started out the year with a brand valuation of $44.3 billion and has continued to climb to an amazing $48.3 billion.
Of course, these numbers are in debate as you'd expect from something as tricky as valuating a brand. A competing company, BrandZ, claimed back in May that Apple had taken over the top spot with a brand valuation of $153.3 billion compared to Google's $111.5 billion. BrandZ uses approximately 2 million customer surveys in determining its rankings, while Brand Finance just uses fiscal metrics.