Canada Brands

Maple Leaf, Canada

Following on from the recent release of the Best Global Brands 2008 survey, in which we commented on the first-time appearance of BlackBerry, it is with interest that we refer you back to Interbrand’s Best Canadian Brand 2008 study from June this year. 

In its second biennial ranking (by brand value) of the Best Canadian Brands, the number one spot – and a completely new entrant since the previous survey in 2006 – went to BlackBerry, the mobile telecommunications company.  BlackBerry’s success in both surveys is made all the more remarkable given that no Canadian brand had ever before featured in Interbrand’s Best Global Brands study.

The Best Canadian Brands survey acknowledges that, historically, many of Canada’s best brands have been simply that – great Canadian brands.  They help to fuel, feed, facilitate and finance the lives of Canadians and hold a special place in the hearts of the people of Canada.

Yet is that enough in today’s global economy, where geographical borders have never been so easy to transcend, and brand opportunities and threats can come from almost anywhere in the world?  Indeed, many of the largest economic growth opportunities now exist in markets outside of North America; more specifically in emerging markets.

The survey did uncover some good news for Canadian brands in the fact that, overall, the Best Canadian Brands have built $13.2 billion in additional brand value since the 2006 survey – equal to a growth rate of 45.9%.

However, the total value of Canada’s top 25 brands in 2008 is only US$42 billion, compared with well over $700 billion for the top 25 global brands.  In fact, the top 25 Canadian brands’ total brand value is significantly less than the US$66.7 billion brand value for Coca-Cola alone, which takes top spot in the global survey.

Returning to the success of BlackBerry, this is a great example of what a brand can achieve if it thinks globally.  With in excess of 14 million users around the world, and distribution channels in more than 135 countries, it comes as no surprise that some 92% of the company’s revenues come from outside Canada.  BlackBerry truly is a global brand.

The top 10 brands in Canada are shown below (in CAN$ million):

  1. BlackBerry (Consumer Electronics) $5,607.7
  2. RBC (Banking/Financial Services) $4,141.1
  3. TD Canada Trust (Banking/Financial Services) $3,779.6
  4. Shoppers Drug Mart (Retail) $3,137.5
  5. Petro-Canada (Energy) $3,132.6
  6. Manulife (Insurance) $2,550.9
  7. Bell (Telecom) $2,537.0
  8. Scotiabank (Banking/Financial Services) $1,870.4
  9. Canadian Tire (Retail) $1,828.5
  10. Tim Hortons (Restaurant) $1,604.6
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