Luxury is fastest growing category in top global 100 brands

The 2019 BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands saw its total value increase 7 percent to 4.7 trillion dollars. While Amazon, Apple, Google and Alibaba are the usual contenders as the world's most valuable brands, it is the luxury sector that is outpacing all categories.

The Brands top 100 index is produced in association with Kantar and WPP, and data showed that luxury when it allows for greater accessibility, improved use of technology, and continued strong demand from Chinese consumers, it outpaced all other categories, increasing 29 percent in value. Retail followed, increasing 25 percent.

The Gucci method

Gucci is a veritable example of how a luxury brand can refresh and revive. The Florentine company saw a rise in value because the brand has effectively refreshed a nearly century-old heritage and made the brand more accessible to a wider audience, while at the same time sustaining its exclusivity and premium pricing. Gucci was among the leaders in trying to make the luxury category more inclusive with its introduction of bold colours and new creative ideas. The brand has become more aspirational, attracted a new, younger audience, and with an inclusive ethos that invited people to experience the brand even if they could not afford its products. Gucci’s brand value rose from No. 80 in the BrandZ Global Top 100 in 2017, to No. 52 in 2019.

Luxury is fastest growing category in top global 100 brands

Chanel, which is ranked at 31, makes its first appearance on the list because the company this year revealed its complete financial statements for the first time. Designer Karl Lagerfeld, who died in early 2019, left an indelible mark on the French luxury house, which consumers see as a highly desirable and purposeful brand. Louis Vuitton takes the top spot amongst luxury brands, followed by Chanel, Hermes, Gucci and Rolex.

Brands who cater to the desire for more personalized products and offer a wide range of services and frictionless engagement are driving consumer demand. But as luxury brands become more accessible, their products must retain exclusivity. Chinese consumers, an important audience for the category continued to spend on luxury, despite China’s slower economy.

Another strong category in apparel is athleisure, with brands showing strength in the five vital signs, according to BrandZ measurement of brand health. Relative to fashion apparel brands, athleisure brands are stronger in Purpose, Innovation, Communication, Brand Experience, and Love.

Future outlook

The most-loved brands will be those that attempt to achieve a zero footprint, re-think operations and find solutions that are fully sustainable both for the environment and the business bottom line.

Amazon is the world's most valuable brand

Amazon saw its value rise 52 percent, and according to BrandZ data caused disruption across categories by perpetually expanding its offering and improving the technology it uses online, in physical stores, and distribution centers. Consumers view Amazon as Meaningfully Different, Purposeful, and Innovative, according to BrandZ analysis. The two-day delivery options has boosted its standing, too.

Image source: Gucci Eye campaign, Gucci website; Article source: BrandZ Top 100 Global Brands 2019 by WPP and Kantar


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