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England Set to Overtake All Blacks as Most Valuable Rugby Brand if Victorious This Weekend

01 November 2019
This article is more than 4 years old.
  • If victorious against the Springboks on Saturday, England will overtake New Zealand to become the world’s most valuable rugby brand
  • England is currently second most valuable, brand value £120 million, behind the All Blacks at £144 million
  • A predicted £250 million uplift to the UK economy and England rugby over the next four years, if England win
  • Fellow finalist, South Africa, sits in 5th, brand value £63 million
  • The All Blacks are also world’s strongest rugby brand, BSI score 95 out of 100

View the Brand Finance Rugby 10 2019 ranking here

The All Blacks hold the title of the world’s most valuable international rugby brand with a brand value of £144 million, according to Brand Finance, the world’s leading independent brand valuation consultancy. New Zealand ranks ahead of the team that crushed their World Cup victory dreams, England, with a brand value of £120 million.

However, should they beat the Springboks in the final this Saturday, England will see a 25% increase in their brand value to £150 million, simultaneously knocking New Zealand off the top spot in the ranking.

Bryn Anderson, Director of Sports Services, Brand Finance commented:

“A World Cup win will enable England to reinvigorate their commercial sponsorship opportunities which have, along with their performance, remained stagnant over the last few years. If the team can move into the next rugby cycle as the #1 ranked team, as well as World Champions, they make themselves highly appealing to corporate sponsors. With the team’s O2 deal up for renewal in 2021, a win would be well timed for England Rugby’s sponsorship renegotiations.”

Although England is the wealthiest union globally, its revenue growth over the past three years has been relatively modest, recording only a 0.2% average annual growth between 2015 and 2018 (excluding income from Rugby World Cup 2015) and an 7% decline from 2017 to 2018, as a result of subpar performances in the lead up to this year’s World Cup. A win could see a return to pre-2015 revenue for the RFU, equating to £30 million per year, consequently bolstering their brand value.

This boost to the RFU’s revenue, paired with increases in Premiership club revenue, which Brand Finance expects to equate to £25 million per year across all clubs, as well as the feel-good spend on match day this weekend, at £30 million, could result in a staggering £250 million uplift to the UK economy and rugby over the next four years.

Bryn Anderson, Director of Sports Services, Brand Finance commented:

“It is fair to say that England has far surpassed expectations during the RWC2019 tournament. The England RFU performance over the last 4-5 years has been flat and the outlook pessimistic. The 19-7 victory over the ‘God of Rugby’, the All Blacks, made history and propelled England from underdogs to strong contenders to lift the trophy for the second time. All eyes will be on Eddie Jones’s team this weekend.”

The All Blacks at crossroads

Despite England defeating New Zealand, the All Blacks currently stand at the top of Brand Finance’s ranking, a reflection of their absolute dominance in international rugby. In the previous five World Cups, they have scored more points and more tries than any other team, and are the only nation to have lifted the trophy three times.

The unwavering performance of the All Blacks, until last Saturday, is reflected in the team’s revenues, which have grown at an average growth of 12% over the last three years, driven by the brand’s ability to drive matchday and commercial income.

Aside from calculating overall brand value, Brand Finance also determines the relative strength of brands through a balanced scorecard of metrics evaluating marketing investment, stakeholder equity, and business performance. Alongside revenue forecasts, brand strength is a crucial driver of brand value.

According to these criteria, the All Blacks are also the world’s strongest international rugby brand with a brand strength index (BSI) score of 95 out of 100 and an elite AAA+ brand strength rating. The team’s long-standing heritage, unparalleled success over the past decades, and sentiment globally amongst rugby and non-rugby fans alike, has earned them the title of the world’s strongest.

Bryn Anderson, Director of Sports Services, Brand Finance commented:

“The continued dominance of the All Blacks is undeniable and their stats speak for themselves. Whether this defeat in the semis is a sign of the end of an era of dominance for the team is yet to be seen, but with Hansen bowing out of the international rugby arena after nearly 16 years, the All Blacks are at a pivotal crossroads.”

Challengers: South Africa

England’s fellow finalists, South Africa’s Springboks, are ranked the fifth most valuable rugby brand in the world, with a brand value of £63 million. Since their World Cup victory in 2007, with Eddie Jones as Assistant Coach, the Springboks have had mixed performances on the field, a consequence of going from fielding one of their most experienced teams in 2007 to a 2019 squad, which averages just 34 caps.

The Springboks have the sixth largest overall revenues in international rugby and the second largest broadcasting revenue which stood at an impressive £38 million in 2018. Although South Africa has performed strongly in measures of brand investment - with the second-highest number of registered players of any international rugby brand, and a strong social media presence - the Springbok brand has not been able to translate this investment into brand equity and brand value.

Bryn Anderson, Director of Sports Services, Brand Finance commented:

“It will be interesting to see whether this spot in the final marks a resurgence for two-time winners, the Springboks. A win would be momentous and would see the team tie with the All Blacks for number of World Cup victories. England and South Africa have played each other four times in the last 18 months - the score currently sits at 2-2 - by Saturday we will know which way the scales have tipped, and history will be made for one team.”


Note to Editors
Every year, Brand Finance values 5,000 of the world’s biggest brands. The 10 most valuable international rugby brands are included in the Brand Finance Rugby 10 2019 ranking.

Argentina was considered for the analysis as a Top 10 rugby nation, but the Argentine Rugby Union (UAR) was unable to provide internal financial information for Brand Finance’s analysis.

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 the efficacy of a brand’s performance on intangible measures relative to its competitors.

Data compiled for the Brand Finance rankings 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.

Media Contacts

Penny Erricker
Communications Executive
Brand Finance

About Brand Finance

Brand Finance is the world’s leading brand valuation consultancy. Bridging the gap between marketing and finance for more than 25 years, Brand Finance evaluates the strength of brands and quantifies their financial value to help organizations of all kinds make strategic decisions.

Headquartered in London, Brand Finance has offices in over 20 countries, offering services on all continents. Every year, Brand Finance conducts more than 5,000 brand valuations, supported by original market research, and publishes over 100 reports which rank brands across all sectors and countries.

Brand Finance also operates the Global Brand Equity Monitor, conducting original market research annually on over 5,000 brands, surveying more than 150,000 respondents across 38 countries and 31 industry sectors. Combining perceptual data from the Global Brand Equity Monitor with data from its valuation database enables Brand Finance to arm brand leaders with the data and analytics they need to enhance brand and business value.

Brand Finance is a regulated accountancy firm, leading the standardization of the brand valuation industry. Brand Finance was the first to be certified by independent auditors as compliant with both ISO 10668 and ISO 20671 and has received the official endorsement of the Marketing Accountability Standards Board (MASB) in the United States.

Definition of Brand

Brand is defined 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. Brand Finance evaluates brand strength in a process compliant with ISO 20671, looking at Marketing Investment, Stakeholder Equity, and the impact of those on Business Performance. The data used is derived from Brand Finance’s proprietary market research programme and from publicly available sources.

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 Brand Rating up to AAA+ in a format similar to a credit rating.

Brand Valuation Approach

Brand Finance calculates the values of brands in its rankings 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, while 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 Discount post-tax brand revenues to a net present value which equals the brand value.


Brand Finance has produced this study with an independent and unbiased analysis. The values derived and opinions presented in this study are based on publicly available information and certain assumptions that Brand Finance used where such data was deficient or unclear. Brand Finance accepts no responsibility and will not be liable in the event that the publicly available information relied upon is subsequently found to be inaccurate. The opinions and financial analysis expressed in the study are not to be construed as providing investment or business advice. Brand Finance does not intend the study to be relied upon for any reason and excludes all liability to any body, government, or organisation.

The data presented in this study form part of Brand Finance's proprietary database, are provided for the benefit of the media, and are not to be used in part or in full for any commercial or technical purpose without written permission from Brand Finance.

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