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SA banking brand values increase

According to the fifth edition of the Brand Finance Global Banking 500, South African banking brands are worth US$8.3 bn, an increase of almost US$1.8 bn, with Standard Bank going up the global rankings from 105 in 2010 to 77 in 2011 with a brand value of US$2.3 bn. Absa is second with a brand value of US$1.9 bn and FNB third, with US$1.5 bn.
SA banking brand values increaseThe annual review of the top banking brands in the world, published in The Banker, reports that Standard Bank's focus has seemed to have paid off this year after an improvement in brand value, supported by an improved brand rating to AAA-. It was recently awarded the top dealmaker in the African region by The Banker, citing its innovative approach to structuring deals in emerging markets. It will be interesting to evaluate the effect of the bank's decision to terminate its sponsorship of the South African cricket team, an initiative helping to maintain its international profile.

Absa has improved its global ranking to 91 from 109, having produced a solid financial performance for 2010 in a difficult operating environment. The focus for the brand has been on positioning the group for sustainable growth achieved through the implementation of the 'One Absa' strategy.

First National Bank was the first South African corporate to sign up as an official national supporter of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, which helped underpin its improved brand rating from AA+ to AAA-. However, growth forecasts for FNB remain in line with 2010 expectations resulting in its static brand valuation ranking third in South Africa.

Leader in brand value

Oliver Schmitz, MD, Brand Finance South Africa said, "South Africa is the leader in brand value creation across the African continent and the benchmark. A strong economy, political stability, a reliable legal system and good regulation have created the right conditions for growth by South African brands. No doubt the World Cup helped create a platform for more South African brands to make an appearance on the global stage."

David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance Plc added, "The top tier of the Brand Finance Banking 500 demonstrates that some banks are pursuing an intelligent brand strategy in salvaging their reputations, whereas others are making only superficial, less effective efforts. Banking brands have never previously been subjected to such high levels of consumer, client and political scrutiny. However, it is possible that some banks will struggle in the short to medium-term as their business strategy fails to deliver on their revised brand and communications mandate."

Most valuable South African banking brands Country Rank 2011 Rank 2011 Rank 2010 Brand Parent Company Brand Value 2011 Brand Rating 2011 Market Cap Brand Value / Market Cap (%)
1 77 105 Standard Bank Standard Bank Group Ltd 2257 AAA- 23659 10%
2 91 109 Absa Absa Group Ltd 1876 AA 13626 13%
3 116 107 First National Bank FirstRand Ltd 1463 AAA- 10176 14%
4 126 133 Nedbank Group Nedbank Group Ltd 1268 AA- 10043 13%
5 133 138 Investec Investec Ltd 1225 AA- 6100.4 20%
6 494 322 African Bank Investments Limited African Bank Investments Ltd 170.7 AA- 2137.2 8%

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