Spanish brands face challenges

23 December 2011

MADRID: Many of Spain's largest brands have declined in value during the last two years as a result of the financial crisis, according to a new study.

Interbrand, the consultancy, analysed the 30 leading intangible assets in Spain, and found that while 63% had enjoyed an improvement on this metric since 2009, numerous major players struggled.

Movistar, the mobile telecoms provider, occupied top spot in the charts, having seen its valuation increase by 28% in this period, reaching €16.7bn overall.

Among the factors contributing to such a trend were a repositioning of the Movistar brand and the "smooth transfer of customer and commercial equity" as it began to sell Telefónica's products in Spain and parts of Latin America.

BBVA, the financial services group, claimed second position but endured a decrease of 27.1% to €5.6bn, due partly to the negative headwinds influencing the banking industry as a whole.

El Corte Inglés, the department store chain, took third having also logged a 16% contraction to €1.4bn, a consequence of the recession and the lack of a clear strategy, despite spending substantial amounts on a high-profile TV ad campaign.

La Caixa, another bank, was down 15% to €1.3bn. The firm recently became the first bank in Spain to offer a "digital wallet", enabling customers to make ecommerce purchases by using an individual code that covered all their accounts and cards.

Telefónica, the telecoms giant and parent company of Movistar, completed the top five, albeit having witnessed a slide of 80% measured against 2009 to just over €1.2bn.

Earlier this year, Telefónica announced plans to fold its ailing Spanish arm into a broader European division and conducted an executive reshuffle, reflecting its falling share price and undesirable levels of customer churn.

The five new entrants in the top 30 included Bershka, a unit of retail conglomerate Inditex that specifically focuses on young buyers, valued at €653m.

Massimo Dutti, an apparel chain also owned by Inditex, debuted with an estimated net worth of €572m. Dia, Carrefour's supermarket, was on €374m, as Cruzcampo beer yielded €224m and Cepsa, the energy group, posted €213m.

"These brands are a most notable example that boosting brand value in times of crisis is difficult, but not impossible," said Gonzalo Brujó, chairman of Interbrand Iberia and Latin America.

Data sourced from Interbrand; additional content by Warc staff