One of UK's biggest telecommunications groups, Vodafone, has been named by consultancy firm Brand Finance as the most valuable brands in the country ahead of banking and finance giant, HSBC.
Vodafone came out seventh globally out of a list of 500 companies worldwide. Meanwhile Google jumped from fifth to second, outclassing Coca-cola and just behind Wal-mart.
IBM and Microsoft were fourth and fifth respectively with HP coming at number nine and Apple at at number 19, just ahead of Nokia. AT&T and Verizon are 11th and 13th respectively while Samsung, China Mobile and Orange are 22nd, 23rd and 24th respectively.
Brand Finance calculates the ranking by using a number of variables linked to the strength, risk and future potential of a particular brand as well as the financial health of the company.
Surprisingly, banks performed very well despite having one of the worst years on record and what Brand Finance calls a near systemic failure. Those who survived saw their brand value increase by a whopping £81 billion year on year.
You can view the league table online at brandirectory.com.
This ranking is based partly on some subjective variables and just like credit ratings, can be just as unreliable and volatile. 2009 has been a very tough year for all telecommunications companies and it is quite surprising to see that Vodafone has managed to inch above the likes of Santander or HSBC.