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Tech Remains Most Valuable Industry In Global 500 Ranking

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The Tech sector remains one of the most valuable in the Brand Finance Global 500 ranking, with a cumulative brand value of close to US$1.3 trillion.

Technology and tech brands have become of ever-increasing importance in the modern world, a trend that has only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic.

In total, 50 tech brands feature in the ranking, however, the brand value is largely attributable to three big players, with Apple, Microsoft (brand value US$184.2 billion), and Samsung Group (brand value US$107.3 billion) together accounting for more than 50% of the total brand value in the sector.

Closely behind them, Huawei managed to reclaim its place among the top 10 most valuable brands in the world, following a 29% growth to US$71.2 billion.

Huawei’s smartphone business was hit hard by US sanctions, but it reacted positively by heavily stepping up investment in both domestic technology companies and R&D, as well as turning its focus to cloud services. 

Retail continues to thrive

The retail sector has cemented its position as the second most valuable in the Brand Finance Global 500 ranking, crossing the US$1 trillion mark for the first time.

Prior to the pandemic, retail was the third most valuable sector behind banking, but a boom in e-commerce has seen it pull away whilst banking has remained stagnant.

Over the course of the pandemic, retail has been the fastest-growing large industry in the Brand Finance Global 500 ranking, with a brand value increase of 46% – outpacing the tech and media sectors which grew by 42% and 33% respectively.

This year, one of the sector’s top performers, Walmart, continued to see brand value growth and reclaimed its spot in the top 5, with the retailer climbing from 6th to 5th following a 20% increase in brand value to US$111.9 billion.

Walmart already had a top-tier physical presence, and at the start of the pandemic, it invested in e-commerce capabilities – which has continued to pay dividends.

Retail also saw the newest entrants in the ranking this year at nine brands, meaning almost one in four new entrants have come from the sector.

The majority of the new retail brands are supermarkets – many of which adapted to the new normal by making themselves more accessible through online shopping and click and collect.

Germany’s Edeka is the highest-ranked of the nine, entering the ranking at 340th place with a brand value of US$6.5 billion. 

David Haigh, Chairman & CEO of Brand Finance, commented:

“The initial impression of lockdown may have been that retail would suffer, but those that have shown the agility to adapt and utilise technology have impressed with solid gains. The transformation of the industry to meet its customers’ evolving needs has sown the seeds for both short- and long-term prosperity.”


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