Taobao named China’s most valuable brand as tech sector bucks economy

Taobao, the online shopping platform owned by Alibaba Group, has been named China’s most valuable brand for the first time in the latest annual rankings from the Shanghai-based Hurun Research Institute. With a valuation of $34.4bn it tops this year’s table ahead of telecoms operator China Mobile ($22.4bn) and the Baidu internet search engine ($21.6bn). Last year’s leader Tencent Holdings ($20.8bn) drops to fifth place, although this is mainly because its WeChat social messaging service has been valued separately for first time – but still comes in seventh with an estimated of $13.2bn.
Now in its eleventh year, the Hurun Most Valuable Chinese Brands‘ rankings are based on a combination of each company’s market value,  a “brand premium,  and feedback from 1,000 Chinese consumers, 65% of whom must command an annual income of more than $12,000.
With its valuation rocketing by 59%, China’s technology sector far outperformed the rest of the field, emphasising its growing role in shoring up China’s faltering economy. This is partly down to its success in persuading multinational electronic giants including Apple and Samsung to base increasingly significant proportions of their manufacturing operations in its industrial heartlands, partly because of the phenomenal growth of ecommerce which is forecast to account for almost 30% of all retail sales by 2018,  and partly because social media and search engine giants such as Facebook, Twitter and Google have been unable to make any great impact on the popularity of domestic incumbents Baidu, Renren and Weibo.
The Hurun Report’s chairman and chief researcher Rupert Hoogewerf said  that, with the growth of domestic consumption remaining a priority for the Chinese government and technology becoming an increasingly ubiquitous part of consumers’ daily lives,  the brand value of technology firms should keep on rising.

Source: scmp