Last updated at 14:27 BST, Wednesday, 30 September 2009

Most valuable brands

Summary

2 October 2009

The global recession has reduced the value of some of the world's biggest brand names, according to a recent report. The report finds some car and luxury product manufacturers have been seriously hit by the economic downturn.

Reporter:
Mark Gregory

Coca-Cola remains the world's top brand

According to the report, Coca-Cola remains the world's top brand

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Report

It's hard to put a financial value on a well-known corporate name but every year the marketing consultancy Interbrand has a go. For example, it claims the world's top brand Coca-Cola is currently worth $68bn, a couple of billion dollars less than 12 months earlier.

Its latest survey suggests the recession has had a considerable impact on the corporate pecking order. Car companies, such as BMW and Toyota, along with Harley Davidson motorcycles, have seen above average declines in the value of their brands - as have some luxury firms, like watchmakers Cartier and Rolex, and Armani clothing. The lesson seems to be consumers don't value expensive things they don't actually need to buy so much when times are hard.

Meanwhile, firms associated with relatively cheap products - McDonalds fast food and Kellogg's cornflakes, for example - have seen the value of their brands rise relative to others in the recession. The Google brand has also done well - maybe that's because more people are bargain-hunting on the internet.

According to the survey, the world's five most valuable brands are Coca-Cola, IBM, Microsoft, General Electric and Nokia, unchanged from last year.

Mark Gregory, BBC News

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Vocabulary

to put a financial value on

to estimate how much something is worth

has a go

makes an attempt to do it

top brand

most successful product/manufacturer (a brand is a trademark name by which a manufacturer and/or its products are known)

has had a considerable impact on the corporate pecking order

has led to significant changes in the hierarchy of companies (a hierarchy is a system in society that is not written down as law where someone is considered more or less important than someone else)

have seen above average declines

have been affected by higher than usual decreases or reductions

luxury firms

companies that manufacture expensive goods that are nice to have but are not necessary, e.g. jewellery

the lesson seems to be

the likely conclusion would be that

associated with

here, known as producers of

bargain-hunting

looking for cheaper deals