Apple World's Most Valuable Brand at $214 Billion, as Tech Rules Top of New List

The annual Interbrand list of the 100 most valuable brands is out. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) is the world’s most valuable brand at $214 billion, up 16% from last year. The top 10 spots on the list are ruled by the tech industry.

The new study, The Best Global Brands 2018, is the 19th annual installment of the list. Which brands are included is based on a complex formula Interbrand has put together. Although it does not give precise details of the methodology, it includes financial strength, an analysis of where the brand sits among competitors and a social media factor.

Google, the search engine of Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOGL) ranks second with a $156 billion, up 10%. Amazon, the e-commerce division of tech giant Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN), ranks third with a brand value of $101 billion, up 56%. Amazon’s sales have surged in the past year as it has introduced a long list of new consumer electronics devices and its Prime membership program has passed 100 million members worldwide. Next on the list, Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) has a brand value of $93 billion, up 16%. This is followed by Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO) with a valuation of $66 billion, down 5%. South Korean consumer electronics and smartphone company Samsung, next, has a valuation of $60 billion, up 6%. Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE: TM) is one of two car companies in the top 10. It has a valuation of $53 billion, up 6%. Mercedes ranked just behind it at $49 billion, up 2%. Facebook Inc.’s (NASDAQ: FB) value dropped 5% to $45 billion. Rounding out the top 10, McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD) has a value of $43 billion, up 5%.

Tech companies also ruled the part of the list that had the largest growth in brand value. Amazon was at the top, followed by Netflix at $8 billion, up 45%, and Salesforce, up $23% to $6 billion.

Five new companies were added to the list: luxury goods brand Chanel with a value of $20 billion, music service Spotify at $12 billion, liquor brand Hennessy at $5 billion, game company Nintendo at $5 billion and Japanese car company Subaru at $4 billion.

Interbrand CEO Charles Trevail described key factors shared by companies on the list:

We live in a world where consumers have more power than ever, curating their own personal brands like we’ve never seen before. Brands such as Amazon, Spotify, and Netflix lead in this era by improving our lives in very personal ways.

Apple, with its suite of hardware products, artificial intelligence aimed at the consumer, and services from music to apps, certainly qualifies.