Google Brand Worth $100B; Microsoft Brand No. 2 at $76B

By Clint Boulton  |  Posted 2009-08-06 Print this article Print

Millward Brown Optimor has just published its list of its 100 most valuable global brands for 2009. Guess who topped the list?

You shouldn't have to if you're reading this blog. But yes, Google rings the bell at No. 1 with a $100 billion valuation, a 16 percent increase from a year ago. Microsoft came in second at $76.2 billion, an 8 percent jump from 2008.

That's quite a big gulf between Google and Microsoft in brand valuation. Not quite as large as the gulf between Google and Microsoft in search, even with the Microhoo combination, but it's big.

Coca-Cola, IBM, McDonald's, Apple, China Mobile, General Electric, Vodafone and Marlboro round out the top 10. Check it out:

Top 20 brands google.png

That's four high-tech companies in the top 10, along with two carriers. Impressive. So, what does Millward base its brand valuation on? In true marketing chutzpah, the company is overshooting the estimates, lousy financial markets notwithstanding:

The brand value published is based on the intrinsic value of the brand—derived from its ability to generate demand. The dollar value of each brand in the ranking is the sum of all future earnings that brand is forecast to generate, discounted to a present day value. Given the high volatility of financial markets over the past 12 months, the brand value is in some cases high relative to current market capitalization, reflecting true value rather than current market swings.

I'm quite sure it's high, but the company says financial data is sourced from Bloomberg, analyst reports, Datamonitor industry reports and company filings with regulatory bodies. I have no reason to expect foul play. Here is the formula:

brand metrics.png

Here are some more talking points that distinguish the 2008 report from the new one:

bullish on brands.png

Despite the bear economy, the total value of the most valuable brands rose by 2 percent to just under $2 trillion. Not too shabby. If you'd like to read and see more charts, download the 4.95MB PDF report here.

But back to this Google versus Microsoft thing. Microsoft is allegedly spending $100 million on marketing Bing.

You know what I would love to see from Millward or some other marketing metrics machine next year? By this time in 2010, I would like to see not only how much Bing's marketing campaign helped it gain share versus Google's search engine, but empirical evidence as to how this affects Microsoft's global valuation in the next report.

It's only been two months and Bing has gained one percentage point, according to StatCounter. I would like to see how Bing is impacting not only the search market, but Microsoft's brand overall.

How about you? Read more about this topic at TechMeme here. |

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