The brand value of the world’s biggest companies is set to fall as a result of the Coronavirus outbreak. However, the telecoms sector may not be as hard hit as other sectors, according to the latest analysis by independent brand valuation consultancy Brand Finance.
Every year, Brand Finance values 5,000 of the world’s biggest brands. The 150 most valuable telecoms brands are included in the Brand Finance Telecoms 150 report.
In particular Brand Finance has assessed the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak based on the effect of the outbreak on business value, as at 18 March 2020, compared to 1 January 2020. While every sector will be affected well into 2021, it appears that the telecoms sector can be seen as much more resilient in the face of COVID-19, while it experiences a faster revolution in data handling as a result of the remote working revolution.
As David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, says: “Telecoms brands are in essence already being pressure tested, having seen an immediate spike in demand – and now is the time to engage with customers and promote their offerings during this crisis.”
Among the major operators Verizon is now the world’s most valuable telecoms brand, overtaking its US rival AT&T, and Deutsche Telekom is the most valuable European telecoms brand.
Meanwhile Emirati telecoms giant Etisalat, whose footprint covers 16 countries, remains the most valuable telecoms brand in the Middle East. Less expected perhaps is that the fastest-growing brand is Vietnam Posts and Telecommunications Group (VNPT), recording an impressive 42 percent growth to $2.4 billion.
VNPT has invested in 4G networks in order to meet customer demand and has ramped up efforts to increase its fibre optic cable speed. The Vietnamese government’s plans for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, smart cities and start-ups, as well as the National Innovation Network Program, 4G and 5G, IoT, and mobile telecommunication networks, are helping to boost the country’s telecommunications sector.
Brand Finance also evaluates the relative strength of brands, based on factors such as marketing investment, familiarity, loyalty, staff satisfaction, and corporate reputation. According to these criteria, Thailand’s AIS is the world’s strongest telecoms brand with a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score of 92 out of 100.
Despite a drop of 12 per cent in its brand value since last year, China Mobile has seen success through powering ahead with its 5G+ Plan. However, rising up through the ranks of this year’s Telecoms 150 report is South Africa’s MTN. Africa’s biggest telecommunications brand, MTN has grown its subscriber level steadily over the past year and boosted its revenues. Customers spending more on data services and MTN’s 5G rollouts have meant the brand is well placed to cater to this growing demand.
So far, it seems, operators have responded well to the ongoing health crisis. Indeed, as we have noted in these pages, they have needed to react quickly to increased consumer demand, and many have done so. However, as VNPT and MTN also show, it’s not just about the coronavirus. Planning ahead is important; demand will continue to grow.
For more information on this report, and to purchase the report in full, go to https://brandirectory.com/rankings/telecoms/