Senior executives tip Britain as world leader of brands

Chiefs at Brand Finance and Vodafone underline UK brands’ global influence.

Britain can incubate and deliver global brands that become truly international, according to Vodafone global brands director David Wheldon.
His belief is echoed by Brand Finance chief executive David Haigh.

Brand Finance unveils the Top 50 Brands of British Origin in this issue of Marketing Week, and the table is topped by HSBC, with Vodafone ranked second and Orange ranked third. Tesco and Shell are in fourth and fifth place respectively.

Many of the brands featured, such as PricewaterhouseCoopers and Reebok, are now in foreign hands. Even cigarette manufacturer Marlboro, which is in the list, was originally a British brand.

Haigh believes this transfer into the international arena is a testament to British ingenuity in building brands.

Haigh says: “We are good at inventing and building brands. If people want to buy them at a fancy price, then good luck to them.”

Wheldon says: “Vodafone is beyond a national identity now. You can see that in our leadership and management mix, but Britain at its historical best was good at bringing people from around the world together and to that extent the company has a bit of Britishness.”

Vodafone was founded in 1984 as a subsidiary of British company Racal Electronics. Our news story that retailer Habitat got caught out when spamming on Twitter drew the following response/


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