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KBC Remains Belgium’s Most Valuable Brand with Steady Growth

·         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

View the full list of Belgium’s 10 most valuable brands here

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.

View the full Brand Finance Belgium 10 2018 report here


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.

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Victoire Ruault

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About Brand Finance          
Brand Finance is the world’s leading brand valuation and strategy consultancy, with offices in over 20 countries. Brand Finance bridges the gap between marketing and finance by quantifying the financial value of brands. Drawing on expertise in strategy, branding, market research, visual identity, finance, tax, and intellectual property, Brand Finance helps brand owners and investors make the right decisions to maximise brand and business value.

Definition of Brand
Brand Finance helped to craft the internationally recognised standard on Brand Valuation – ISO 10668. It defines a brand as a marketing-related intangible asset including, but not limited to, names, terms, signs, symbols, logos, and designs, intended to identify goods, services or entities, creating distinctive images and associations in the minds of stakeholders, thereby generating economic benefits.

Brand Strength
Brand Strength is the efficacy of a brand’s performance on intangible measures, relative to its competitors. In order to determine the strength of a brand, we look at Marketing Investment, Stakeholder Equity, and the impact of those on Business Performance.

Each brand is assigned a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score out of 100, which feeds into the brand value calculation. Based on the score, each brand is assigned a corresponding rating up to AAA+ in a format similar to a credit rating.

Brand Valuation Approach
Brand Finance calculates the values of the brands in its league tables using the Royalty Relief approach – a brand valuation method compliant with the industry standards set in ISO 10668. It involves estimating the likely future revenues that are attributable to a brand by calculating a royalty rate that would be charged for its use, to arrive at a ‘brand value’ understood as a net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand in the open market.

The steps in this process are as follows:

1 Calculate brand strength using a balanced scorecard of metrics assessing Marketing Investment, Stakeholder Equity and Business Performance. Brand strength is expressed as a Brand Strength Index (BSI) score on a scale of 0 to 100.

2 Determine royalty range for each industry, reflecting the importance of brand to purchasing decisions. In luxury, the maximum percentage is high, in extractive industry, where goods are often commoditised, it is lower. This is done by reviewing comparable licensing agreements sourced from Brand Finance’s extensive database.

3 Calculate royalty rate. The BSI score is applied to the royalty range to arrive at a royalty rate. For example, if the royalty range in a sector is 0-5% and a brand has a BSI score of 80 out of 100, then an appropriate royalty rate for the use of this brand in the given sector will be 4%.

4 Determine brand-specific revenues by estimating a proportion of parent company revenues attributable to a brand.

5 Determine forecast revenues using a function of historic revenues, equity analyst forecasts, and economic growth rates.

6 Apply the royalty rate to the forecast revenues to derive brand revenues.

7 Brand revenues are discounted post-tax to a net present value which equals the brand value.

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