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Disney is most valuable media brand

News, 09 March 2017

LONDON: Walt Disney has been named the most valuable media brand in the world after the US entertainment group achieved success with its Star Wars franchise as well as its parks and resorts division.

That is according to the latest global rankings from Brand Finance, the brand valuation consultancy, which assessed thousands of the world's biggest companies to produce a listing of the top 25 most valuable media brands.

American companies dominated this year's rankings, accounting for 17 of the total, but Walt Disney stood out with a AAA+ score and a valuation of $34.5bn, up 10% from the previous year.

Brand Finance said it assigned brand strength to companies based on a series of factors, such as marketing investment, familiarity, loyalty and corporate reputation.

It noted that Disney's parks and resorts division increased revenue by 6% in Q3 2016, driven largely by the opening of Shanghai Disneyland, which has since attracted 7m visitors.

In addition, Disney gained from the success of its "Star Wars: The Force Awakens" movie, which drove up merchandising revenue by 8% in Q1 2016, while "Star Wars: Rogue One" also did well at the box office.

Brand Finance further noted that LexisNexis, the legal research provider, was the fastest growing media brand, having seen its value rise 44% to $1.6bn.

Meanwhile, turning to the UK, the report said ITV's brand value fell 25% to $3.5bn after the UK's largest commercial broadcaster witnessed a 3% drop in advertising revenue and a 14% decline in pre-tax profits.

"Economic uncertainly following Brexit was the reason for this dip," the report said. "Despite this, ITV’s Chief Executive Adam Crozier has expressed optimism that the brand will see a reversal in the coming year," it added. "[And] recent data suggesting unexpectedly high consumer confidence in the UK will work in ITV's favour."

Data sourced from Brand Finance; additional content by Warc staff