Don’t miss this article on why African innovators & others should pay close attention to Tencent, Alibaba, and other Eastern firms.While brands from Asia such as Tencent, Alibaba, and others are well represented among the world’s 100 most valuable brands, according to WPP and Kantar Millward Brown‘s 12th annual global brands report released in June, African companies are scarce.

WPP & Kantar Millward Brown define brand value as a combination of business and financial performance metrics as well as consumer and B2B perceptions of a company.

Perhaps not surprisingly, nine of the top ten brands are tech-related companies, with notable US tech stalwarts taking the top five: Google, Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook.

At the same time, many of the new entrants to the list are also US tech companies, such as YouTube (#65), Netflix (#92), and Snapchat (#93).

Industries with Combined Highest Brand Value, 2017

Data: WPP, Kantar Millward Brown, BrandZ, Bloomberg; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios

Global Focus: Among the Top 10 most valuable brands which together comprise $1.42 trillion in value, only one, Tencent (parent company of Chinese social platform WeChat), isn’t American.

Why it matters: Consumer internet & tech companies increasingly dominate customer mindshare, due in part to their proficiency at exploiting massive amounts of user data to better meet consumer needs in existing markets and quickly enter new ones. Leading global brands including Facebook, Tencent, and Uber, are already planting a flag in Africa. As the continent’s digital revolution continues, inviting more global players, homegrown firms in the consumer internet sector will have to employ unique data-driven consumer insights to compete and thrive. In the words of Salesforce’s Chief Digital Evangelist, “Data is the new oil.

Why measure brand value? Understanding companies’ value as brands helps determine their ability to drive future business despite macro challenges. For companies operating in Africa, developing a strong and robust brand can be a key differentiator as consumption and the consumer class continues to grow.

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By Afridigest

Afridigest is a business media brand with an editorial focus on ideas, analysis, & insights for business innovators across Africa and beyond. We help smart readers get smarter about Africa's tech ecosystem.