ZURICH, Switzerland (April 16, 2015) – Nescafé continues to lead Interbrand’s ranking of the top 50 Best Swiss Brands, ahead of Roche and Nestlé. This is the outcome of the latest Interbrand study, published jointly with the Swiss financial magazine BILANZ. The brand values of the Best Swiss Brands fluctuated greatly this year. The top results were achieved by brands such Geberit (up 29 percent), Nespresso (up 19 percent) and Patek Philippe (up 15 percent). After a one-year absence, Sika is back in the Swiss ranking.
“We live in turbulent times,” said Michel Gabriel, Managing Director of Interbrand in Zurich. “We see a lot of changes in consumer behavior as far as B2C brands are concerned and we also see a lot of changes in the economic environment due to digitalization and globalization—all of which affects B2B brands, in particular. Changes that used to take years now happen in months, causing considerable upheaval in brand leadership.”
Following two years of losing brand value, Nescafé gained four percent this year, expanding its lead over second-placed Roche to more than two billion Swiss francs. The global coffee brand was able to strengthen its brand value of CHF 10.653 billion by intensifying its influence in emerging markets and attracting additional, younger target groups.
Roche follows in second place, albeit with a slight decline of one percent in its brand value. The second largest Swiss pharmaceutical corporation consistently works on expanding the leading position of its brand in the field of personalized healthcare. The company also has some promising drugs in its pipeline.
Nestlé holds third place again this year and successfully increased its brand value by three percent to CHF 7.472 billion as a result of its favorable positioning as a food, health and wellness brand. With three brands in the ranking, the Nestlé Group is the clear 2015 winner: Nescafé in first place, Nestlé in third and Nespresso claiming the 12th position. The premium coffee brand has broadened its geographic scope in the United States. At the same time, a new store design, new machines and new brand ambassadors are keeping the brand fresh: George Clooney and Penelope Cruz will be joined in the future by Matt Damon and Jean Dujardin to promote Nespresso.
Geberit gained a notable 29 percent and soared to 22nd place with a brand value of CHF 1.236 billion. Geberit has taken great strides to make its competence more tangible to the consumers. The company opened up additional showrooms, created a virtual tour of its product range on the Internet and invested heavily in sales in China. The acquisition of Sanitec of Finland also added considerably to Geberit’s strength.
The greatest accomplishment by far in the Best Swiss Brands 2015 was achieved by Sika. With a brand value of CHF 384 million, the manufacturer of construction chemicals is back in the ranking, now in 39th place. The takeover battle with French competitor St. Gobain ensured constant media presence and thus extensive brand recognition. However, aside from this distraction, Sika is highly successful and acquired several companies in the past twelve months, tapped new markets and reported record numbers. “With all this, the brand gained significant recognition, popularity and approval, primarily due to the consistent stance of its management”, explained Gabriel.
The second newcomer in the ranking is Helvetia in 49th place with CHF 255 million. After the acquisition of Basel-based competitor Nationale Suisse in 2014, the insurance company with operations throughout Europe made it to the 50 Best Swiss Brands for the first time. With values such as trust, energy and enthusiasm and with its claim “your Swiss insurance” the brand underscores its roots in the homeland.
Other winners in the Best Swiss Ranking 2015 come from the watchmaking industry. Out of 16 brands in this year’s ranking of the 50 most valuable Swiss brands, 13 successfully boosted their brand value. With an increase of 15 percent to CHF 1.772 billion, Patek Philippe is especially noteworthy. The beacon of the Swiss watchmaking industry celebrated its 175th anniversary in 2014 with new model versions and anniversary watches, positioning itself as a luxury brand with a focus on tradition and exclusivity. Rolex is still the most valuable Swiss watch brand. With a slight growth in brand value of one percent to CHF 7.252 billion, Rolex climbed from fifth to fourth place. Perpetual competitor Omega, on the other hand, suffered a considerable loss of six percent and fell out of the Top Ten for the first time. A look at the industry distribution, however, shows that watchmaking with a total brand value of CHF 21.849 billion, continues to be the most important industry in the Best Swiss Brands Ranking 2015. Its overall value grew by CHF 229 million.
It is followed by the banks with CHF 13.3 billion. As a group, they lost CHF 216 million in brand value compared to last year when they achieved a significant increase. The two major banks, in particular, are pulling the industry value down. While Credit Suisse (CHF 3.647 billion) continues to hold 8th place as in the previous year and UBS (CHF 3.619 billion) even rose from 10th to 9th place, their continued legal disputes involving the support of tax evasion, foreign exchange manipulation, etc. and their unsatisfactory efforts to regain customer confidence, are manifested in a declining brand value. “Banks of this stature are expected to exhibit more innovation and thought leadership”, Gabriel notes.
Davidoff dropped completely out of the ranking. The cigar and perfume brand, holding 20th place last year, continues to be favored by consumers. As a privately held company, the parent, Oettinger Davidoff, is not disclosing sufficiently detailed financials to allow a calculation of the brand value. Another company that disappeared from the top 50 is Kuoni, still in 48th place a year ago. The brand has suffered from an identity problem for some time. Due to poor operating results and projections, the brand was unable to hold on to the ranking.
The total value of the 50 most valuable Swiss brands is an impressive CHF 103 billion. “We live in a strong brand country,” summarized Gabriel. “Major banks, key B2B brands and strong luxury brands provide diversity. Competence in brand management is ensured by a high-quality workforce and, as a rule, Switzerland has always generated a great many brand innovations—case in point: Nespresso.”
Interbrand is the world’s leading brand consultancy, with a network of 31 offices in 27 countries. Since it opened for business in 1974, it has changed the way the world sees branding: from just another word for “logo” to a business’s most valuable asset to business strategy brought to life. Publisher of the highly influential annual Best Global Brands ranking and Webby Award-winning brandchannel, Interbrand believes that brands have the power to change the world—and helps its clients achieve this goal every day. Interbrand’s combination of strategy, creativity, and technology delivers fresh ideas and insights, deep brand intelligence, clear business opportunities, and compelling brand experiences. Interbrand is part of the Omnicom Group Inc. (NYSE: OMC) network of agencies. For more information, please visit us at Interbrand.com and follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
Brand valuation by Interbrand
The “Best Swiss Brands 2015” ranking is a list of the 50 most valuable Swiss brands. To be included in the ranking, four criteria must be fulfilled: 1) the brand’s country of origin must be Switzerland; 2) there must be sufficient publicly available financial information; 3), the economic value added (EVA) must be positive; and 4) the brand must be visible to the general public and easily recognized by a majority of the Swiss population.
The Interbrand method on which the ranking of the most valuable Swiss brands is based is similar to the business valuation of a company. In a first step, the expected earnings in the brand’s business field over the following few years are calculated by way of standard financial analysis (economic value added). In a second step, the role the brand plays in the buyers’ decision-making process is analyzed. The resulting percentage is applied to the previously calculated earnings to show the share attributable exclusively to the brand. The relative strength of the brand compared to its competitors is then determined by way of a qualitative analysis using ten brand strength factors. Finally, the earnings attributable to the brand must be discounted based on a risk factor, which differs depending on the brand’s strength. The sum of these discounted earnings reflects the current value of a particular brand.