TD Bank named most valuable brand for 2012; Lululemon has biggest improvement

TORONTO – With its recognizable logo centred prominently on yoga and exercise gear, Lululemon Athletica Inc. (TSX:LLL) was the fastest growing brand in 2012, according to a marketing study released Wednesday.

The brand value of Vancouver’s Lululemon —whose trendy and form-fitting workout clothing is already well-known in Canada and is steadily growing in the U.S. — has increased 292 per cent to a value of $3.24 billion, the latest study by brand experts Interbrand has determined.

It moved up to the seventh spot for 2012 from 17th spot in 2010.

“Lululemon demonstrates phenomenal success in diversifying beyond yoga apparel into a lifestyle brand that resonates with a much broader consumer audience,” said Alfred DuPuy, managing director of Interbrand Canada.

TD Bank (TSX:TD) was named as Canada’s most valuable brand in 2012 with a value of $9.69 billion by Interbrand, moving up from No. 2 pot in 2010, a 45 per cent gain. Interbrand said the improvement at TD —which has rapidly been ramping up its presence south of the border — is attributed to its attention to customer experience and its brand strategy.

Information company Thomson Reuters (TSX:TRI) had the second-most valuable brand with a value of $9.54 billion.

RBC (TSX:RBC) was third with a brand value of $7.92 billion, while BlackBerry maker Research In Motion (TSX:RIM) was fourth with a brand value of $6.44 billion.

Canada’s fifth most valuable brand was Scotiabank (TSX:BNS) with a brand value of $3.96 billion, Interbrand said in a news release.

“Gains were exhibited across all sectors, particularly in financial services, where Canadian banks’ efforts at home and abroad have proven that ‘good, old, boring banking’ makes for really good business and even smarter brand-building,” DuPuy noted.

The sixth most valuable brand in Canada was Tim Hortons (TSX:THI) with a value of $3.44 billion.

After Lululemon, was Shoppers Drug Mart (TSX:SC) in eighth spot at $3.17 billion.

The ninth most valuable brand was Bell (TSX:BCE) at $3.05 billion and Rogers Communications with the 10th most valuable brand at $2.99 billion.

The overall value of Canadian brands was up 24 per cent from 2010, the last time Interbrand conducted its study.

“The resiliency of Canadian brands and their ability to secure ever higher brand valuations in the face of uncertain economic times is represented by an impressive $14 billion surge for the top-25 brands, a 24% increase vs. our 2010 table,” DuPuy said.

Criteria for judging a brand’s value includes the financial health of the business and the brand, the brand’s role in creating demand and the future strength of the brand.

Interbrand bills itself as the world’s leading brand consultancy and has almost 40 offices in 25 countries.