Apple is the world’s 50th best-known brand, according to the annual Most Valuable Brands survey conducted by the world’s leading brands consultancy, Interbrand.

Sandwiched between Kentucky Fried Chicken and Xerox, Apple’s brand is estimated to be worth $5.3 billion, with its value adjudged to have fallen by 3 per cent on the 2001 rating. The company’s performance mirrors that of last year, when it came 49th. However, it marks a steep drop from its performance in both 1999 and 2000, when it was ranked 36th, with a rating of $4.3 billion and $6.6 billion respectively.

Among technology brands in the 2002 survey, Microsoft maintains second position behind Coca Cola, with a worth-rating of $64 billion, a 2 per cent drop on its 2001 showing. Standing out among the tech companies was Dell (31st), which registered a 12 per cent increase in brand value. Compaq (27th) lost 21 per cent of its value.

Apple’s AIM Alliance partners, IBM (3rd) and Motorola (74th) both suffered drops in brand-value, falling by 3 per cent and 9 per cent respectively.

Interbrand calculates brand value as the net present value of the earnings that the brand is expected to generate and secure in the future. The table identifies the 100 most valuable global brands with a value greater than $1 billion.

"Though advertising and marketing spending may have tightened-up over the past year, what we found is that those brands that have put the customer experience first and developed their businesses around that have been rewarded with increases in brand value," notes Gerry Khermouch, associate editor of BusinessWeek, co-sponsor of the survey.