BEIJING: Financial services, telecoms and online brands are among the most valuable intangible assets in China, according to a new study.

Interbrand, the specialist consultancy, estimated that the net worth of the top 25 brands in China has increased by 18% year on year, to RMB1.3bn, 2011.

"At the current pace, it won't be too long before we are talking about the Best China Global brands," Jez Frampton, CEO of Interbrand, said. "China continues to represent an engine of opportunity for regional and global growth."

China Mobile, the telecoms provider boasting 622m customers, led the charts on RMB209bn, a 3% jump when measured against 12 months ago.

Financial services brands took the next five spots, with the China Life Insurance Company up 5% to RMB104bn and the China Construction Bank improving by the same proportion, posting RMB101bn.

ICBC logged a 14% expansion to RMB88bn, the Bank of China enjoyed a 6% rise to RMB73bn, and Ping An's total grew by 5% to RMB60bn.

Tencent, the web giant, gained 76% on RMB40.3bn, Moutai, the spirits brand, was up 38% to RMB29.5bn, and the China Merchants Bank leapt 19% to RMB27.6bn.

More broadly, the combined value of internet firms rose from RMB43.9bn to RMB73.7bn, as Baidu yielded an 80% increase to RMB12.5bn, Alibaba accrued 94% to RMB7.8b and CTRIP's net worth more than doubled to RMB7.3bn.

Overall, 12 brands in the top 50 traded in the banking sector, which witnessed a lift from RMB302bn to RMB345bn, with the four featured insurance companies also up from RMB172bn to RMB191bn.

Food and beverage brands experienced a decline from RMB10bn to RMB7.6bn, largely due to safety concerns, as Yurun, on RMB2.9bn, Mengniu, on RMB2.9bn and Shuanghui on RMB1.7bn, all observed sizeable drops.

Elsewhere, the study reported that the minimum total required to secure a place in the top 50 rose by 18% on an annual basis, reaching RMB1.36bn, as recorded by the Bank of Beijing.

The value ratio between the highest- and lowest-ranked brands also narrowed slightly from 176:1 in 2010 to 154:1 in 2011, reflecting a more competitive domestic market, Interbrand added.

Data sourced from Interbrand; additional content by Warc staff