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Tencent brand is still China’s most valuable

Chinese technology giant Tencent remains China’s most valuable brand, growing its worth 29 per cent to US$106 billion, according to the BrandZ top 100 most valuable Chinese brands report.

It shows that technology brands continued to lead the way, with the Tencent brand strengthening its hold on the top spot thanks to the popularity of its social-media platform WeChat. Tencent was also one of three technology brands in the top 20 “risers” listing.

With Tencent on the top 100 list are NetEase (31) and Sina (61). Making its debut in the 40th spot is e-commerce brand VIP.com.

Web portal Sina’s initiatives in live video and self-broadcasting through its Weibo platform helped build its following among young people and attract advertising revenue, driving a 43 per cent rise in brand value to $900 million.

NetEase, which makes online and mobile games and offers an e-mail service, grew 36 per cent to $2.6 billion.

Sectors still dependent on the traditional economy, such as banks, insurance, and oil and gas, have declined 6 per cent in value. The exceptions are alcohol, and food and dairy.

Several brands of baijiu, China’s traditional rice wine, have expanded distribution and adjusted pricing and marketing to reach a broader audience. This allowed them to make up for a decline in sales after government measures to limit extravagance at official events reduced demand for alcohol, especially premium brands. Moutai increased 41 per cent in value, entering the top 10 for the first time in ninth position.

Some entrepreneurial Chinese brands are looking for overseas success before returning attention to their home market, such as digital brands Anker, DJI, Elex and Ninebot.

Millennials are playing an increasing role in commercial and brand success in China, says the report. They tend to favour brands that are famous or trendy, and the research reveals the brand most successful at increasing millennial loyalty is mobile phone Oppo, up 157 per cent since 2014.

“Chinese brands are taking the leap and going global on the back of three key factors: the country’s rising international stature, pressure to find alternative sources of growth as the domestic market slows, and increasing overseas consumer receptivity to Chinese brands,” says BrandZ global head Doreen Wang.

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