Lenovo targets top global brand status

7 December 2012

BEIJING: Lenovo, the information technology group, has set itself the target of joining the 100 most valuable brands in the world, which would require more than trebling its current total in this area.

Speaking to the BBC, Arthur Wei, a vice president at Lenovo as well as its general manager of brand communications, argued this constituted a key objective.

"My goal is that one day Lenovo can be recognised as one of the hundred most valuable brands in the world," he said.

According to a recent study by Millward Brown, part of WPP Group, Lenovo's net worth here stood at $2.3bn, down by 3% from 2011.

DHL was the lowest-ranked member of Millward Brown's last global list of the top 100 intangible assets, and valued at $7.6bn, indicating that Lenovo has some progress to make.

Earlier this year, Lenovo was named as the world's largest PC manufacturer for the first time, delivering 15.7% of shipments, or 13.8m units, in the third quarter, ahead of HP on 15.5%.

Lenovo's model for improving its status is based around the idea of "protect and attack", or defending its number one position in markets like China and pursuing aggressive growth in select target markets.

Such tactics have enabled it to assume category leadership in five of the biggest markets for personal computers, spanning both fast-growth and more established economies.

"It took us four years to become number one in Russia by utilising the attack strategy," Wei said. "We're also number one in India, and in Germany and Japan. So the attack strategy not only works in emerging markets but in mature markets too."

Innovation is also vital. Lenovo boasts around 200 designers, and has rolled out offerings like the Yoga 13, also an example of its "PC-plus" strategy as it can serve as a laptop, tablet or touchscreen.

More broadly, expanding overseas has proved very profitable for the firm, which now yields 58% of its revenues outside of China. Despite this increasing international scale, the aim is to stay nimble.

"If you keep pushing yourself as a start-up company, you're fighting for survival even though you're number one," Wei said. "That's the reason this company has a chance to win."

Data sourced from BBC; additional content by Warc staff