Tencent crowned China’s most valuable brand as Chinese brand power hits record high

Tencent is ranked China's most valuable brand

Tencent has retained the title of China’s most valuable brand for a fourth consecutive year, beating out Alibaba, ICBC and Baidu, according to BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Chinese Brands rankings.

The report, which is created by WPP and Kantar Millward Brown, revealed Tencent’s brand value increased 25% to be worth $132.2bn.

The achievement came in a bumper year for Chinese brands which combined achieved record growth in brand value of 23% to be worth $683.9 billion, up from $557.1 billion a year ago.

The growth represents the largest one-year growth since the China ranking was first published four years ago and reinforces the surging strength of Chinese brands.

Tencent, which recently overtook Facebook in terms of market value, was miles ahead of the second most valuable brand Alibaba, which grew 53% year-on-year to achieve a brand value of $88.6bn, while China Mobile held on in third place, despite a 15% decrease in value to $49.2bn

Financial services company ICBC is China’s fourth most valuable brand, worth $37.2bn after an 18% increase in value, and tech giant Baidu, grew 5% to be worth $24.9bn to rank in fifth place.

In a sign of the strength and dominance of China’s e-commerce market, this year’s report welcomed five new logistics companies, in a reflection of the increasing volume and sophistication of the market's package deliveries. Among the new entrant's was SF Express which is ranked the 11th most valuable brand.

WPP’s David Roth said, “The game is changing for brands that want to compete successfully in China. The country’s leadership expects brands to pursue a higher purpose; one that improves the lives of Chinese people, helps drive greater economic equality and strengthens the nation.

“Chinese consumers appear more willing to pay a premium for innovative products and services. More sophisticated in their purchasing decisions, consumers are responding to brands that grab their attention and meet their needs in relevant ways with products and services that are both innovative and different,” said Roth.

The annual BrandZ report combines financial data with interviews with over 400,000 Chinese consumers to create a monetary value for brands.

Doreen Wang, Global head of BrandZ, Kantar Millward Brown said: “Chinese brands are quickly learning how to raise their profile through impactful and memorable advertising. A combination of having the right media mix, message and memorable communication is a sure bet towards accelerating brand value growth.

"The importance of ‘brand’ to Chinese consumers is proven by our Brand Power index, with only those brands with a high Brand Power score, a measurement of consumer predisposition to buy a brand, managing to stay in this competitive ranking, indicating the importance of brand to sustain success in China’s rapidly changing market," said Wang.

Patrick Xu, China CEO, WPP, said: “It’s a really exciting time in China right now with many ambitious businesses recognising the opportunities abroad and the importance of investing in building their brand outside of the region. Many enterprises are responding to China’s Belt and Road initiative and strengthening their overseas expansion momentum. Combined with market dynamics and millions of consumers embracing the China Dream, we believe the overall perception of Brand China is evolving, with Chinese enterprises enjoying a growing reputation within the global competitive landscape.”

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