· BDO retains second-place title in the ranking with brand value at €2.5 billion
· Stella Artois is Belgium’s fastest-growing brand, up 14% year on year
· Colruyt’s brand value drops 19% as high street competition grows
· Proximus rings in as Belgium’s strongest brand with 81.2 score out of 100
KBC retained the leading position as Belgium’s most valuable brand as its value grew by 7% over the past year to €3.6 billion, according to the latest report by Brand Finance, the world’s leading independent brand valuation and strategy consultancy. KBC enjoyed a strong year as it continued to expand its digital offerings and maintain a loyal customer base.
Looking ahead, KBC’s brand is reaffirming its commitment to Ireland by making that jurisdiction a fully-fledged core country for their group, alongside an established presence across Belgium, the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Slovakia and Hungary. In Ireland, KBC is aiming to lead the industry as a ‘Digital First’ customer-centred bank, with lessons to then be shared across the rest of the KBC group internationally.
David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, commented:
“KBC remains Belgium’s most valuable brand because it is recognised by customers as a trusted financial partner across both banking and insurance. As KBC continues to develop its brand across Europe, its customers will increasingly be able to rely upon the growing strength of the bank in challenging times for the banking industry.”
BDO retains second-place title in brand value ranking
In second place, the auditing, accounting and consulting brand, BDO (brand value down 1% to €2.5 billion), remained just ahead of third ranked AB InBev which has narrowed the gap following 10% brand value growth to €2.4 billion. 2017 was a year of change for BDO leadership, with Keith Farlinger taking over as CEO, but business as usual throughout much of the rest of the organisation.
Stella Artois is Belgium’s fastest-growing brand
One of AB InBev’s beer brands also made the Brand Finance Belgium 10 league table. Stella Artois (brand value up 14% to €1.4 billion) is the fastest-growing brand in the ranking this year, with increased international awareness spreading through the brand’s continued association with the Wimbledon tennis tournament as the official beer of the Championships.
AB InBev has had a remarkably successful year, with their family of brands growing strongly across the world to dominate the global beer industry. This includes their ownership of the world’s most valuable and second-most valuable beer brands, the American Bud Light (brand value up 7% to €6.3 billion) and Budweiser (brand value up 15% to €6.0 billion). Despite a decade of decline in American sales, these two iconic brands have benefited from their leadership positions across other mainstream beer markets.
Colruyt struggles amongst supermarket retail competitors
Colruyt (brand value down 19% to €1.2 billion) has had a difficult year, proving that the competition in the Belgian food retail industry from the likes of Carrefour Belgium is taking its toll on the brand. In its efforts to attract new customers, the Colruyt chain reacts to every competitor’s price cuts to maintain its “lowest price” guarantee, which has reflected in the brand’s margins. Whilst Colruyt Group is trying to keep costs in check, the brand has also continued its investments in staff, efficiency and sustainability.
Proximus rings in as Belgium’s strongest brand
In addition to measuring overall brand value, Brand Finance also evaluates the relative strength of brands, through the Brand Strength Index (BSI) – a balanced scorecard of factors such as marketing investment, customer familiarity, staff satisfaction, and corporate reputation. Along with the level of revenues, brand strength is a crucial driver of brand value.
According to these criteria, telecommunications giant Proximus is Belgium’s strongest brand this year with a score of 81.2 out of 100. While brand value has subsided primarily as a result of international revenue erosion, its domestic Belgian business has partially offset some of those losses. This demonstrates how Proximus’s strong domestic brand allows it to weather international challenges, especially as its TV, mobile and internet postpaid services grow in popularity across Belgium.
Note to Editors
Every year, leading valuation and strategy consultancy Brand Finance values the world’s biggest brands. The 10 most valuable Belgian brands are included in the Brand Finance Belgium 10 2018 league table.
Brand value is understood as the net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand in the open market. Brand strength is assessed through a balanced scorecard of factors (such as marketing investment, stakeholder equity, and business performance) and used to determine what proportion of a business’s revenue is contributed by the brand.
Additional insights, more information about the methodology as well as definitions of key terms are available in the Brand Finance Belgium 10 2018 report.
Brand Finance helped craft the internationally recognised standard on Brand Valuation – ISO 10668, and the recently approved standard on Brand Evaluation – ISO 20671.
Data compiled for the Brand Finance league tables and reports are provided for the benefit of the media and are not to be used for any commercial or technical purpose without written permission from Brand Finance.