INTERNET SEARCH AND ADVERTISING outfit Google is a more valuable brand than shiny must-have design firm Apple, according to a study by people who consider that kind of thing.
The Brandz list comes from agency Millward Brown and has been shining its light on firms for some nine years. For years it is the fruit-themed firm that came out on top, but this time it is Google that wears the gilded crown.
Apple had the crown for three years, but slipped into second position. It is followed by venerable enterprise IT firm IBM. Google's brand value swelled by 40 percent in the last year, while Apple's shed 20 percent and IBM's declined 4 percent. At the number four spot is Microsoft, which saw its brand value increase by 29 percent. In fifth place is the first non-technology company, fast food retailer McDonalds.
The rest of the top 10 include AT&T and Amazon, as well as at least one sugared water seller, one credit firm and one Marlboro, whatever that is.
Glass aided Google's rise in brand value, said the firm, while Apple drifted down. "Google has been hugely innovative in the last year with Google Glass, investments in artificial intelligence and a multitude of partnerships that see its Android operating system becoming embedded in other goods such as cars," said Nick Cooper, managing director of Millward Brown.
"All of this activity sends a very strong signal to consumers about what Google is about and it has coincided with a slowdown at Apple."
Google's global brand is worth $159bn, it said, while Apple's is worth $148bn. IBM, which has pulled in good money for decades, is worth $108bn, and Microsoft $90bn. Other technology firms also increased brand value, and Chinese outfit Tencent rose to 14th place with a 97 percent increase to $54bn. Facebook also moved up, clocking in at number 21 with a $36bn value.
Overall, technology companies make up 29 percent of the top 100 companies' total value. µ