The “Best Global Green Brands” is published by the marketing and research company Interbrand. Over the last 10 years, Interbrand has built its corporate citizenship practice. They believe that corporate citizenship isn’t just “good practice” but “smart practice,” with its benefits greatly outweighing its risks.
Because of the potential for misalignment between brand performance and perception, Interbrand decided to measure leading brands’ green efforts (environmental sustainability performance) and to acknowledge that those brands excelling in this area receive credit for their initiatives.
Interbrand’s Best Global Green Brands is based on analysis of publicly available data, and data from Thomson Reuter’s ASSET4 (which includes environmental sustainability performance data for over 3,000 companies). This analysis was then paired with Interbrand’s understanding of how brands create brand value.
The Best Global Green Brands report combines public perception of environmental sustainability (“green”) performance with demonstration of that performance based on publicly available information and data.
Interbrand’s years of experience in brand valuation have shown that efforts to grow brand value must include a focus on internal and external elements of brand strength. For this ranking, green includes both actual environmental sustainability performance and the degree of external reporting. This included an evaluation of the performance components of green brand strength (clarity, commitment, protection, and responsiveness) in the context of company’s efforts to act in environmentally responsible ways and an evaluation of the perception components of green brand strength (authenticity, relevance, differentiation, consistency, presence, and understanding) in the context of consumer awareness of company’s green activities, while also weighing environmental performance.
Deloitte was engaged to develop a corporate environmental performance methodology based on publicly available data as an input to Interbrand’s overall scoring methodology. The Green Performance Score was composed of 82 metrics on which each company was ranked. The metrics evaluate companies’ disclosure and environmental performance across six “pillars”:
Policies and mechanisms put in place by the company to manage environmental impacts and successfully set and execute environmental programs.
The degree to which the company recognizes and engages with the various relevant stakeholder groups associated with the company.
The company’s performance across operations as measured in energy efficiency, GHG emissions, water management, waste management, and toxic emissions management.
The company’s performance in measuring, reporting, and mitigating the environmental performance of their supply chain.
Transportation and Logistics
The company’s performance in measuring, reporting, and mitigating the environmental performance of their transportation and logistics, business travel and commuting.
Products and Services
The product portfolio of the company and an evaluation of the green attributes of its products, including product efficiency, sustainable production, and use of life cycle assessment.
The Green Performance Score is designed to be applicable across industry sectors and therefore includes metrics designed to make the evaluations meaningful and relevant across industries and adjusts for outsourcing and multi-sector operations. Because public disclosure of environmental performance is a leading practice among sustainable or “green” companies, the Green Performance Scores are based on publicly available data as well as data from Thomson Reuter ASSET4 (which includes performance data for over 3,000 companies).
The evaluation of each company’s consumer perceptions (external components) was conducted by Interbrand. To begin, Interbrand asked consumers in the 10 largest global markets to answer questions related to their perception of each company’s green activities along the six dimensions of brand strength. Interbrand spoke to 10,000 consumers worldwide and each brand was rated by at least 1,250 consumers. For the initial stage of analysis, Interbrand aggregated data on each dimension within each market. The six external dimensions of brand strength assessed were:
Interbrand then aggregated the scores across markets. The data was ranked by the size of each country and each country’s contribution to the global economy was also considered. This permitted a view of which brands consistently differentiate themselves in terms of environmental performance across markets, and which do the best job engaging in green activities that consumers find relevant. The analysis also discounted cases where positive perceptions of the brand outweighed a company’s actual green performance.
Overall, the “strongest” green brands appear to reside at the intersection of performance and perception. The final ranking table is a detailed illustration of which brands lead when it comes to the environment.
Here are the top 50 green brands according to Interbrand’s analysis:
4. Johnson and Johnson
5. Hewlett-Packard (HP)
24. General Electric (GE)
29. Pepsi Co
41. American Airlines
44. Credit Suisse
46. Citi Bank
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© 2012, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.
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