Apple topples Google in brand value rankings

The iPhone creator sees strong growth in its brand value to become top dog in the Millward Brown rankings.

Apple

Apple has been named the most valuable brand in the world, bringing Google's four-year reign at the top to an end.

The iPhone maker saw its brand value increase 84 per cent over the last year. It is now worth $153.3 billion (95.2 million), according to WPP company Millward Brown.

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Google saw its brand value decrease by two per cent, making it the only company in Millward Brown's top 10 rankings to see a decline.

In 2006, Apple was 29th in the top 100, but since then its value has grown 859 per cent. Google ranked seventh in 2006, with its value growing 298 per cent.

"Apple's success is proof positive that investment in innovation, design and branding do pay off," said Nigel Hollis, executive vice president and chief global analyst at Milllward Brown, in a blog post.

He suggested Apple's "premium" model was had evidently helped its value surpass Google, which uses the "freemium" way of operating.

"One thing is for sure, the integrated approach does help Apple maintain the consistency so important to a strong brand," Hollis added.

"Whether it is a Mac, iPod,iPhone or iPad, the design and interface of Apple products is familiar and easy to use."

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Technology companies dominated the top 10, with IBM in third, Microsoft fifth, AT&T seventh and China Mobile ninth.

In 2010's top 100 rankings, IBM was in second place and Microsoft in fourth. McDonald's managed to creep inside the top four this year.

On a wider scale, the results indicated many companies were performing well in the post-recession environment.

"In the last year, the global economy shifted from recovery to real growth - the combined value of all brands in the top 100 ranking has risen by 64 per cent since 2006 and is now worth $2.4 trillion," said David Roth at WPP.

"Strong brands, while not immune to the vicissitudes of the market, are more protected, prepared, resourceful and resilient."

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