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SA’s 10 most powerful brands revealed

While telecommunications occupy the top positions, it’s financial institutions that dominate the list of most powerful local brands.

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South Africa’s top 10 brands are MTN, Vodacom, Sasol, Standard Bank, Woolworths, FNB, Absa, Nedbank, Investec and Mediclinic.

South Africa’s top brands, which contribute not only to the country’s economy, but to the image they portray when doing business internationally, were unveiled on Thursday.

Brand South Africa and Brand Africa Finance hosted the breakfast announcement, which took place in Houghton, Johannesburg.

Brand Finance calculates the values of the brands in its league tables using the ‘Royalty Relief approach’. This approach involves estimating the likely future sales that are attributable to a brand and calculating a royalty rate that would be charged for the use of the brand- which is what the owner would have to pay for the use of the brand — assuming it was not already owned.

The report revealed that the total value of the Top 50 brands increased 3% from R373 billion in 2015 to R384 billion this year.

MTN remains the most valuable brand despite losing 32% of its brand value due to some of its reputational challenges.

Woolworths – which stands at number five -holds the strongest brand position with an increase of 21% in brand value.

Telecommunication – Telkom has seen the greatest increase in brand value following the integration of Business Connexion and improved performance on the retail side with good ratings on Value for Money and Customer Satisfaction according to the South African Customer Satisfaction Index (SAcsi).

The increase in brand value sees Telkom move from 23rd position last year to 17th in 2016.

Interestingly, many of the top 10 brands from 2015 have retained their positions in 2016 except for Woolworths which has moved to fifth place, and Absa which has moved to seventh.

Brands seeing a significant increase in value include Investec (27%) and WesBank (27%).

Two new brands have entered the Top 50. Country Road, now owned by Woolworths – which enters at 31st place with a value of R4.64 billion and Growthpoint enters at 50 with a value of R1.47 billion.

SABMiller holds the most valuable portfolio amounting to R29.67 billion with four of its brands standing amongst the country’s top 50: Castle, Carling Black Label, Hansa Pilsner and SABMiller.

SABMiller is followed by Firstrand with three brands (FNB, WesBank and RMB) valued at R23.12 billion.

Brand South Africa’s CEO Dr Kingsley Makhubela congratulated the Top 50 corporate brands saying, South African commercial brands are a key component of a strong nation brand and how this is experienced by both domestic and international audiences.

“Commercial brands are key messengers in positioning the country competitively. At the same time, we express our appreciation to all other corporate brands in the country for your contribution to the growth and development of South Africa,” said Makhubela.

Chairman of Brand Finance Africa, Thebe Ikalafeng said the story of the Top 50 corporate brands is a good story for the South Africa Nation Brand as well as the continental story.

“Many of these brands have footprints on the continent and this bodes well for perceptions about business on the continent, their ethics, governance and commitment to social upliftment.”

Newly appointed Director of Brand Finance Africa, Jeremy Sampson, said the more competitive the market, the more important it is to have a strong brand, leverage it to its full potential and measured and monitor at all times.

“Brands are increasingly the major assets of companies, yet does anyone have an idea of their true value? Marketing is no longer a ‘nice to have’ it can be the difference between success and failure,” added Sampson.

Other stories on South Africa’s brands:

South Africa’s Famous Brands gobbles up Gourmet Burger Kitchen UK

12 Things South Africans call by their brand names rather than what they actually are

Top ten brandies in South Africa and the world

Five South African brands making international waves