Michelin remains most valuable tyre brand, India’s MRF and Apollo in world’s Top 15

French tyre brand retains top spot for sixth year in a row, followed by Bridgestone and Continental; tyre companies to see growing impact of sustainability on their brand value in the coming years.

By Ajit Dalvi calendar 05 Apr 2023 Views icon69048 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Michelin remains most valuable tyre brand, India’s MRF and Apollo in world’s Top 15

Along with the world’s most valuable and strongest automobile brands and automotive component brands, the toppers list for tyre brands is also out. And it reads like the who’s who of the tyre industry, reflective of the demand as well as the shift underway as tyremakers also address the megatrend of vehicle electrification.

French company Michelin has been rated both the most valuable and strongest tyre brand, valued at US$ 7.9 billion. There is no shift in the rankings of the top three of the world’s most valuable tyre brands in 2023. While Michelin remains in the top spot for the sixth consecutive year, it is followed by Bridgestone (brand value down 1% to US$ 7 billion) in second place, and Continental (brand value down 3% to US$ 4.1 billion) in third.

This revelation comes from the latest edition of ‘Auto 100’, the annual comprehensive study on the most valuable and strongest automobile and automotive brands produced by leading brand valuation consultancy, Brand Finance.

Of the Top 15 tyre manufacturers, only six have seen their brand value increase year on year.

According to Brand Finance, Michelin maintains its No. 1 most valuable tyre brand ranking despite achieving marginal year-on-year brand value growth of 2%. The tyre maker’s growth has slowed in comparison to last year’s results (brand value up 15.6%) after it faced significant challenges including high inflation, rising costs and supply chain issues.

Michelin's official mascot Bibendum has helped create a high level of familiarity and awareness, two key metrics that make up brand strength.

Michelin is also the strongest with a Brand Strength Index score of 88.1 out of 100, with a corresponding AAA rating. Michelin’s high brand equity has partly enabled it to remain resilient to difficult macroeconomic challenges. The brand’s diverse offering of tyres for a multitude of vehicles, and large global presence, have allowed it to remain as a reliable choice for tyres across its markets. The brand’s official mascot – Bibendum – which is more commonly referred to as the Michelin Man, is an extremely recognisable figure, used within the brands marketing campaigns, and seen across motorsports, car dealerships, and restaurants world-over. This has undoubtedly helped create a high level of familiarity and awareness for the Michelin brand, two of the key metrics that make up brand strength.

There’s more to Michelin – it also has the highest Sustainability Perceptions Value at US$ 255 million.  Michelin has set itself the challenge of integrating 100% sustainable materials into its tyres by 2050. This entails using renewable or recycled materials in the production of its tyres while maintaining performance and reducing environmental impact. It is making positive progress on this challenge, already producing a tyre that integrates 58% sustainable materials. It is important to note that Michelin’s position at the top of the table is not an assessment of its overall sustainability performance. Instead, it highlights the value that Michelin has tied up in the sustainability perception of stakeholders. Michelin does however also have a strong Sustainability Perception Score of 5.08, higher than both its key competitors Bridgestone and Continental.

At No. 4 position is Goodyear with a brand value of $2.2 billion, followed by Dunlop with $ 2 billion. However, while Goodyear’s 2023 ranking is up by five ranks, Dunlop is up by four ranks. The next five positions – from No. 6 to No. 10 remain unchanged starting with Pirelli, Hankook, Yokohama, Toyo Tires and Giti.

Chinese brand Sailun, at No. 11, has been rated at the fastest-growing tyre company, its brand value up 6% YoY to US$ 7 million. In 2022 Sailun released its EcoPoint3 tyres, a more sustainable and affordable solution to car manufacturers, after 10 years of development. The production of these tyres utilises more energy efficient liquid phase mixing technology, while creating a tyre with lower rolling resistance, which reduces fuel consumption in comparison to some competitors.

There are two Indian tyre companies in the Top 15 list – MRF Tyres and Apollo Tyres. MRF Tyres, ranked 13th, sees its brand value grow 3% to $0.3 billion and has seen a sizeable jump of 15 ranks in the latest industry ranking list. At No. 15 is Apollo Tyres with a brand value of $0.6 billion.

Growing focus on sustainability

As with many automotive-related industries, the tyre sector will also be significantly impacted by sustainability related trends in the coming years. Consumers and regulators alike are increasingly demanding tyres are constructed from sustainable materials, with lower rolling resistance, and which can be recycled or re-used at the end of their life cycle.

Similarly, as electric vehicle sales increase the world over, there will be a greater demand for specialised tyres that can handle distinctive features, such as high torque and regenerative braking systems. Tyre makers are also creating ‘smart’ tyres that can be digitally connected and deliver real-time data on tyre performance, wear and tear, road conditions and other significant variables. This market is set to increase as automated vehicles become more mainstream.

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