Apple Inc. (AAPL) Still the Best of the Global BrandZ

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) has not seen a lot of love from investors and analysts the last few months, though certainly when things benefit them directly – like a stock buyback and increased dividend have started to make them fans again But even with the stock price down 30 percent from its all-time high last fall, the Apple brand and logo still resonate powerfully across the world with perhaps the most important stakeholder of all – consumers.

Apple Inc. (AAPL)And it is those consumers that have contributed to the incandescent power of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and has kept the brand as the most valuable in the world for a second straight year, according to the annual BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands list, which was released Tuesday for 2013. In some parts of the list there have been some major shifting, but at the top things look pretty familiar compared to the 2012 list. While Apple led the list for the second straight year, fellow tech brands Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) and International Business Machines Corp (NYSE:IBM) were Nos. 2 and 3 on the list this year by switching positions from a year ago.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) is far ahead of the competition with a brand value estimated at about $185 billion, while Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) is valued at $114 billion and IBM at $112 billion. Apple’s brand value grew by 1 percent over a year ago, while Google’s went up 5 percent.

Image: Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)

International Business Machines Corp (NYSE:IBM) lost 3 percent of its brand value from a year ago, and No. 4 company McDonald’s Corporation (NYSE:MCD) lost 5 percent of its brand value but remained fourth at $90.2 billion. All told, the combined value of the top 100 global brands has gone up 77 percent since 2006 (the first year of this report) to post a combined value of about $2.6 trillion.

The only other tech company in the top-10 was Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), which fell from fifth to seventh with a brand value of $69.8 billion – a decrease of 9 percent from the prior year. The biggest jump into the top-10 was by Visa Inc (NYSE:V), which saw its brand value spike 46 percent to $56 billion, moving the company from 15th to ninth on the list.  By the way, Apple’s top competitor, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., is 30th on the list with a $21 billion brand value – up 51 percent from the prior year.

What do you think about these rankings? Do they make sense, or would you change the top-10 in some way? Are there companies you would take off the list, or those you think should be on the list? Let us know your thoughts on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) and the rest of the bunch in the comments section below.