BHP, the world’s largest mining company, has seen its brand value rise 29% to US$5.1 billion and took first place in the Brand Finance Mining, Iron & Steel 25 league table, following a major re-branding exercise in 2017.
In May, BHP launched its “Think Big” campaign following its rebranding from BHP Billiton to BHP, which focused on demonstrating the role of BHP in Australia’s economy and community. The rebranding appears to be paying off as BHP not only increased its brand value, but also its Brand Strength Index (BSI) score from 73.2 to 74.3 this year.
Meanwhile, the most valuable brand of 2017, Glencore, performed well financially over the last year, but its brand value dropped by 11% to US$3.7 billion. This is because the brand suffered significant erosion in brand strength from 62.9 to 55.3, caused in part by widespread mentions of Glencore in association with the Paradise Papers released in November.
Posco (down 4% to US$3.6 billion) was able to retain its position as the world’s third most valuable mining brand, ahead of Rio Tinto (up 25.4% to US$3.1 billion), which enjoyed strong brand value growth alongside higher iron ore prices caused by increased Chinese demand.
David Haigh, CEO of Brand Finance, commented: “After the 2014 metal price crisis, caused by a drop in demand for raw materials in China, the industry is once again being shaped by the Chinese market. The country’s demand for higher-quality iron ore imports is benefiting the industry’s largest brands such as BHP and Rio Tinto. Challenger brands will need to define their competitive advantage to capture a greater proportion of the ever growing Chinese market.”
Additionally, the merger between Baosteel and Wuhan Iron and Steel has resulted in China’s biggest steelmaker – Baowu Steel – and fuelled the fastest-growth in the Brand Finance Mining, Iron & Steel 25 league table. Thanks to increased revenue, Baowu Steel’s brand value grew 103% to US$2.0 billion.