For the fourth year in a row, HDFC Bank has turned out to be India’s most valuable brand, almost doubling its brand value since the ranking began in 2014 from $9.4bn to $18.0bn according to the BrandZ™ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands 2017 by WPP and Kantar Millward Brown. The study mentioned that India’s most valuable brands have increased their brand value by 21 per cent to $109.3bn last year. This compares with a 2 per cent decline in 2016 and is well ahead of the 8 per cent value increase of the BrandZ™ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands 2017. The data shows that consumers perceive HDFC bank as increasingly innovative.
The study has covered 1,20,000 brands across 414 categories with insights from 3.1 million consumers.
For the first time, the study incorporated new research from Y&R’s BAV Group in what it takes to build powerful national brands. According to the 2017 Best Countries report, India stands out for its history, cultural influence, distinction and reputation for entrepreneurship; especially among the world’s business decision-makers. There is a strong relationship between how people perceive a country and how they view the brands associated with it and India’s reputation has a significant impact on the global power of its brands.
Vishikh Talwar, Managing Director, Kantar Millward Brown, South Asia, said, “There are now ‘multiple Indias.’ Consumers continue to love the brands they’ve loved for generations, while equally embracing the brands of the future. Brands must be completely in rhythm with the pulse of the market. Those that can accurately interpret Indian sensibilities, while ensuring smart pricing, are likely to be most successful. This is easier for local brands but people will relate just as positively to a global brand if it uses insight to understand and meet their needs and communicate in a way that builds trust.”
He mentioned that Google emerged as one of the most innovative brands while Amul has a distinct style of communication as it’s topical and witty.
Talwar spoke about the emerging landscape in top most loved brands which had an interesting mix of old traditional brands like Maggi, Colgate, Britannia and comparatively new international brands like Google, Facebook, Amazon and Uber. “Interestingly Amazon and Uber are more loved today than Flipkart and Ola, who are actually the first movers of our category. They have understood Indian sensibilities better,” he said.
David Roth, CEO, EMEA and Asia, The Store, WPP, said, “As reflected in this year’s ranking, the most agile Indian brands have recognised the complexity in the market and achieved just the right balance between aspirational and affordable.”
The study pointed out that the automobile category grew by 23 per cent in value. Royal Enfield, Maruti Suzuki and TVS were among the Top 10 overall fastest risers. Maruti Suzuki (no.7, 56 per cent) extended the brand beyond its traditional appeal to the value segment of the market, while introducing new showrooms called NEXA to reach premium customers.
The India Top 50 have faced successive disruptions in the last year. Some were global, some were created by fast-growing competitors and others strategically imposed by the government, including demonetisation.
Though significantly affected by these challenges, the FMCG category managed to grow at 6 per cent in total value. Some brands achieved impressive value increases by accurately understanding and responding to Indian sensibilities. Noodle brand Maggi (no.32; 66 per cent), the overall second-fastest riser, aligned itself with the trend for nostalgia. This helped it bounce back after a difficult couple of years, its rapid regrowth demonstrating how a strong brand can help a company weather a crisis and recover faster, although it is still somewhere below its peak brand value of $1.1bn in 2014. Talwar added, “It almost reached where it started from about three years ago.”
The financial services category increased its value by 26 per cent with Punjab National Bank (no.39; 43 per cent) and Kotak Mahindra Bank (no.6; 36 per cent) being the fastest rising banks in value.
The consumer packaged goods category didn’t have a good year as the brands grew by only 4 per cent as it directly felt the impact of demonetisation. Talwar also mentioned Patanjali which has grown pretty well last year.
The BrandZ™ Top 10 Most Valuable Indian Brands 2017
||Brand value 2017 (US$M)
||State Bank of India
||Kotak Mahindra Bank
|Trends highlighted by BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable Indian Brands:
- There are seven newcomers to the ranking including telecom provider Jio (no. 11), retailer D-Mart (no.24), appliance brand Whirlpool (no.45), insurance brand Bajaj Allianz (no.49), Canara Bank (no.50) and entertainment brands Sun Direct (no.27) and Dish TV (no.47)
- The long-term growth curve of the Top 50 is positive, with the total brand value of the ranking up 57 per cent since the study was first carried out in 2014, when it amounted to $ 69.6bn
- India experienced resurgence in national pride, while also embraced globalization. This manifested in a desire for products and brands that best reflect Indian heritage, sensibilities and tastes, which benefited local brands and put pressure on multinationals to follow suit.
- The top riser is insurance brand ICICI Prudential (no.35; 89 per cent.) It benefited from the ‘halo effect’ of other brands’ successful responses to rising consumer affluence, which led to an increase in sales of assets such as cars that need insurance protection.