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Ireland’s ‘brand value’ soars as State is seen as ‘island of calm’

US still the most valuable national brand but Trump presidency denting its appeal

Ireland is ranked 33rd out of 100 countries in terms of the value of its brand

Ireland is one of the fastest growing national brands in the world, with its value rising 24 per cent last year to $427 billion, according to a new study.

Brand Finance, a London-based brand valuation consultancy which compiled the figures, attributed the State’s success in part to its ability to attract foreign direct investment and the manner in which it has bounced back since the recession.

“As a bridge between the US, the UK and the EU, Ireland is somewhat of an island of calm in a sea of macro and micro economic troubles,” said Simon Haigh, Brand Finance managing director for Ireland

Despite the State’s strong showing it still dropped one place to 33 in the latest ranking of 100 countries, which is topped by the US, China and Germany.

The US retained its number one spot as the world’s most valuable nation brand with a value of $21.1 trillion. However, Brand Finance said the election of Donald Trump as president had caused damage to how the country was viewed.

It recorded growth of just 2 per cent year-on-year in 2017, putting its dominance at risk in the long run, Brand Finance said. While macroeconomic challenges had contributed to a slower pace of growth, perceptions of Mr Trump’s presidency were having a negative impact on the brand, the company said.

China, the second most valuable national brand, was also the fastest growing in absolute terms, up $3.1 trillion to $10.2 trillion – up 44 per cent year-on-year.

Germany was ranked in third place overall on $4 trillion, followed by Japan on $3.4 trillion and the UK on $3.1 trillion.

The study finds that uncertainty arising from Brexit has not impacted on the UK’s brand value as yet.

Iceland was the fastest growing national brand overall last year, up 83 per cent on 2016, due in part to a sharp rise in visitors after the country appeared in the television series Game of Thrones.

While northern European nations largely fell back in terms of brand value last year, formerly weaker nations such as Portugal, Italy, Greece and Spain all showed growth.

Asian nations were also on the rise, with Vietnam, the Philippines, Thailand and South Korea all adding between 37 per cent to 43 per cent to their national brands last year.

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