May 19, 2020

Google pips Apple

Apple
Google
David Haigh
CEO of Brand Finance
Catherine Rowell
3 min
Google pips Apple

Apple’s brand value has dropped 27 percent, ending a 5-year period at the top. The world's most valuable brand is Google, with a value of US$109.4 billion.

Google’s brand value rose by 24 percent during 2016 (from US$88.2bn to US$109.4bn) whilst Apple’s declined from $145.9 billion to $107.1 billion, according to the latest Brand Finance Global 500 report. Google last occupied the position of the world’s most valuable brand in 2011.

The company remains largely unchallenged in its core search business, the mainstay of its advertising income. Ad revenues were up 20 percent in 2016 as budgets are increasingly directed online and Google finds more innovative ways to monetise users.

David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, said: “Apple has struggled to maintain its technological advantage, with new iterations of the iPhone delivering diminishing returns, while the Chinese market is now crowded with local competitors. Apple has been living on borrowed time for several years by exploiting its accumulated brand equity. This underlines one of the many benefits of a strong brand, but Apple has finally taken it too far.”

Every year, leading valuation and strategy consultancy Brand Finance values the brands of thousands of the world’s biggest companies. Brands are first evaluated to determine their power / strength (based on factors such as marketing investment, familiarity, loyalty, staff satisfaction and corporate reputation). Brand strength is used to determine what proportion of a business’s revenue is contributed by the brand, which is projected into perpetuity to determine the brand’s value. The results of this analysis are ranked, with the world’s 500 most valuable brands featured in the Brand Finance Global 500.

Lego has regained its status as the world’s most powerful brand. The building blocks for Lego’s brand strength have always been present but the release of the Lego Movie in 2014 provided the final push required to make Lego the world’s most powerful brand in 2015. The first sequel, the Lego Batman Movie will be released on February 9th. Its predicted impact has helped Lego regain its top position, lost to Disney in 2016. Further planned releases will continue to build the brand for years to come, while contributing significantly to Lego’s already vast licensing income.

David Haigh adds: “Unvalued brands can lead to undervalued companies that are more vulnerable to takeover, struggle to secure adequate financing and miss market opportunities. Meanwhile a powerful brand can protect a company’s value during turbulent market conditions, create new market opportunities and increase profit margins. All companies should therefore not just know the value of their brands, but also understand what drives that value and how it can be harnessed to benefit the business as a whole.”

Highlights also include:

  • China’s bank brands are now worth more than those of the United States
  • ICBC is the world’s most valuable banking brand
  • AT&T has overtaken Verizon to become the world’s most valuable telecoms brand
  • Emirates is no longer the most valuable airline brand, having been overtaken by American, United & Delta
  • Coca-Cola, Pepsi, McDonalds, KFC & Subway all see brand values fall, undermined by healthy eating trends
  • Nokia’s brand is back from the brink and back in the top 500, following takeover and rebrand of Alcatel and launch of the Nokia 6 phone

 

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Jun 12, 2021

How changing your company's software code can prevent bias

Deltek
diversity
softwarecode
inclusivity
Lisa Roberts, Senior Director ...
3 min
Removing biased terminology from software can help organisations create a more inclusive culture, argues Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR at Deltek

Two-third of tech professionals believe organizations aren’t doing enough to address racial inequality. After all, many companies will just hire a DEI consultant, have a few training sessions and call it a day. 

Wanting to take a unique yet impactful approach to DEI, Deltek, the leading global provider of software and solutions for project-based businesses, took a look at  and removed all exclusive terminology in their software code. By removing terms such as ‘master’ and ‘blacklist’ from company coding, Deltek is working to ensure that diversity and inclusion are woven into every aspect of their organization. 

Business Chief North America talks to Lisa Roberts, Senior Director of HR and Leader of Diversity & Inclusion at Deltek to find out more.

Why should businesses today care about removing company bias within their software code?  

We know that words can have a profound impact on people and leave a lasting impression. Many of the words that have been used in a technology environment were created many years ago, and today those words can be harmful to our customers and employees. Businesses should use words that will leave a positive impact and help create a more inclusive culture in their organization

What impact can exclusive terms have on employees? 

Exclusive terms can have a significant impact on employees. It starts with the words we use in our job postings to describe the responsibilities in the position and of course, we also see this in our software code and other areas of the business. Exclusive terminology can be hurtful, and even make employees feel unwelcome. That can impact a person’s desire to join the team, stay at a company, or ultimately decide to leave. All of these critical actions impact the bottom line to the organization.    

Please explain how Deltek has removed bias terminology from its software code

Deltek’s engineering team has removed biased terminology from our products, as well as from our documentation. The terms we focused on first that were easy to identify include blacklist, whitelist, and master/slave relationships in data architecture. We have also made some progress in removing gendered language, such as changing he and she to they in some documentation, as well as heteronormative language. We see this most commonly in pick lists that ask to identify someone as your husband or wife. The work is not done, but we are proud of how far we’ve come with this exercise!

What steps is Deltek taking to ensure biased terminology doesn’t end up in its code in the future?

What we are doing at Deltek, and what other organizations can do, is to put accountability on employees to recognize when this is happening – if you see something, say something! We also listen to feedback our customers give us and have heard their feedback on this topic. Those are both very reactive things of course, but we are also proactive. We have created guidance that identifies words that are more inclusive and also just good practice for communicating in a way that includes and respects others.

What advice would you give to other HR leaders who are looking to enhance DEI efforts within company technology? 

My simple advice is to start with what makes sense to your organization and culture. Doing nothing is worse than doing something. And one of the best places to start is by acknowledging this is not just an HR initiative. Every employee owns the success of D&I efforts, and employees want to help the organization be better. For example, removing bias terminology was an action initiated by our Engineering and Product Strategy teams at Deltek, not HR. You can solicit the voices of employees by asking for feedback in engagement surveys, focus groups, and town halls. We hear great recommendations from employees and take those opportunities to improve. 

 

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