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St Patrick’s Drinks on Guinness as it Defends Title of Most Valuable Irish Brand

16 March 2018
This article is more than 5 years old.

· Guinness remains Ireland’s most valuable brand at €2.1 billion

· AIB jumps from 4th place to 2nd while Bank of Ireland drops from 5th to 7th

· Budget brands Primark and Ryanair record sluggish brand value growth

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

Guinness remains Ireland’s most valuable brand after growing by 5% over the last year to a brand value of €2.1 billion on the back of new product innovations and steady sales of the world-famous draught, according to the latest report by Brand Finance, the world’s leading independent brand valuation and strategy consultancy.

Guinness’s brand value has been supported by revenue growth primarily in Europe and Africa, with sales remaining steady elsewhere. In addition, Diageo, the corporate parent and owner of St James’s Gate brewery, has launched new products using the Guinness brand, including full-flavoured non-alcoholic beer to reach a whole new customer base. This represents a clear strategic vision to better leverage the strength of the Guinness brand into new product segments.

Simon Haigh, Managing Director, Brand Finance Ireland, commented:

“Ireland’s home-grown brands are worthy ambassadors for the Irish economy, which saw an impressive 7% increase over the past year. Their strong reputation derives not just from successful marketing campaigns, but because they create authentic value for their customers. Guinness leads by example, delighting with every pour, settle, and sip.”

Bank Brand Values Diverge

Allied Irish Banks (up 40% to €1.9 billion) was the fastest-growing Irish brand over the past year, as it moved from 4th place to 2nd. AIB’s brand value increase coincided with its privatisation as part of Europe’s biggest IPO of the year and its significantly improved financial results. This represents a significant turnaround for a brand seriously damaged in the fallout from the 2007-2008 financial crisis, which has now returned to private ownership.

In contrast, Bank of Ireland (down 30% to €0.9 billion) is the only brand in the Brand Finance Ireland 10 league table to see its value drop this year. The brand had a tough year and is now going through a period of adjustment under a new CEO. Bank of Ireland’s public association with the nationwide mortgage tracker scandal, which generated widespread negative press coverage and weak revenue forecasts, contributed to its poor brand performance.

Budget Brands Struggle

Despite benefitting from pan-European operations, Ireland’s two big budget brands, Primark/Penneys (up 1% to €1.8 billion) and Ryanair (up 4% to €1.6 billion), recorded sluggish brand growth.

Primark’s brand value is under pressure from increased online competition, following its decision not to sell clothes online given the very small margins involved in its product range.

Meanwhile, Ryanair had to face a staff holiday scheduling crisis in late 2017, when 400,000 passengers were impacted by flight cancellations. However, Ryanair’s deliberate decision to manage customer expectations by positioning itself as a no-frills service, rather than prioritising emotional connection, makes the brand more resilient in such situations. Despite causing a major communications issue for Ryanair at the time, last year’s embarrassment is unlikely to cause Ryanair much long-term brand damage.

Beyond Consumer Brands

The brand value of Smurfit Kappa (up 6% to €1.2 billion) grew in conjunction with their 'Open the future' global brand campaign showcasing the company’s expertise across packaging, paper, and sustainability to help solve real-world problems. It reflects a renewed focus by Smurfit Kappa on innovation and working with brands to make their products more attractive to shoppers.

Meanwhile, Kingspan (up 26% to €0.7 billion), which focuses on building insulation, enjoyed very strong brand value growth at the same time that it made a large number of strategic acquisitions globally. As part of this effort, Kingspan will gain access to a number of new technologies to complement their existing insulation development work, especially in a market, which is continually seeking improved efficiency and effectiveness.

View the full Brand Finance Ireland 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 brands in Ireland are included in the Brand Finance Ireland 10 2018 league table.

Brand value is equal to a net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand. Brand strength is used to determine what proportion of a business’s revenue is contributed by the brand.

More information about the methodology as well as definitions of key terms are available in the Brand Finance Ireland 10 2018 report.

Data compiled for the Brand Finance league tables and reports is provided for the benefit of the media and is 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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