Both Iberdrola and Naturgy maintain stable growth and good financial results. Endesa’s subsidiary Enel, meanwhile, was more affected, thus impacting the group’s results, as was Elecnor, whose short-term outlook is not much better according to analysts, which has lowered its brand strength.
Iberdrola is the only Spanish company in the sector’s top 10. With a growth of 1.4% in brand value, it remains in 6th place in the table and already has a value of 4,383 million euros. With stable growth and a large investment in renewable energies, Iberdrola is a reference in driving the transition to clean energies. The company has improved its results in 2021.
Naturgy also met financial forecasts despite Covid-19 and has shown stable performance and brand value, rising 4.1 points in brand strength to 71.9 out of 100, moving up 4 places in the ranking to enter the top 20 most valuable utilities (position 18).
Endesa’s subsidiary, Enel, saw lower forecasts that have had an impact on the group’s results. With Naturgy’s rise and an 18.3% drop in brand value, Endesa is just behind in 19th place in the ranking.
The energy sector is one of the sectors that has remained most stable during the pandemic, as essential services have been maintained without incident. This has improved consumer perception of the sector’s brands. Spain plans to mobilise some 240 billion over 10 years to carry out the energy transition to which it has committed, which is expected to generate between 250,000 and 300,000 new jobs.
State Grid charges ahead
State Grid has retained the title of the world’s most valuable utilities brand by a considerable margin, despite recording a 3% decrease in brand value to US$55.2 billion.
Spanning 26 provinces and supplying power to over 1.1 billion people, equating to a staggering 88% of the population, State Grid is the world’s largest public utility brand. The behemoth also operates overseas in the Philippines, Brazil, Portugal, Australia, and Italy. The brand is continuing to expand its global footprint, particularly in the Latin America region, having announced the purchase of Chilean companies Chilquinta and CGE last year.
Following President Xi Jinping’s bold pledge to make China carbon neutral by 2060, State Grid has outlined its plan to support the nation’s clean energy drive through the development of new infrastructure – including wind, solar, and hydro power – as well as the promotion of electric energy to replace coal and fossil fuels.
Chinese brands dominate
Aside from State Grid, a further five Chinese brands feature in the Brand Finance Utilities 50 2021 ranking: CGN (brand value down 2% to US$2.9 billion); GD Power Development (down 7% to US$2.6 billion); Datang Power (down 3% to US$1.8 billion); ENN (down18% to US$1.7 billion); and China Yangtze Power (up 12% to US$1.1 billion).
China Yangtze Power is a new entrant this year, claiming 49th position in the ranking. The brand is the largest hydropower company in the world in terms of consolidated installed capacity of hydropower. It joined the London Stock Exchange last year, becoming the third company to list in London through the London-Shanghai Stock Connect Scheme.
The total value of the six Chinese brands in the ranking account for 36% of the total brand value. Behind China, the US’s 20 brands that feature account for 19% of the total brand value.
E.ON and Vattenfall electrify as fastest growing
The sector’s fastest growing brand is E.ON, following an impressive 59% brand value increase to US$4.7 billion, simultaneously jumping five spots in the ranking to 7th position. Celebrating its 20th birthday last year, the German utilities giant has benefitted from a combination of organic and inorganic growth. The resilience of the firm’s business model in the face of COVID-19, combined with its adaptability and move towards renewable energy, has played a role in E.ON’s chart-topping growth. The results of an internal restructuring and the successful incorporation of German energy company, Innogy, have also played a substantial role in boosting its brand value.
Sweden’s Vattenfall is the second fastest growing brand this year, recording a 36% brand value growth to US$2.7 billion and climbing from 30th to 14th position. Despite profits taking a hit as a result of the pandemic, Vattenfall has shown impressive resilience given the reduction in power generation and lower sales of electricity, gas, and heat. The brand has continued to focus on its investment projects, expansion, and partnerships, which include offshore wind investment projects and the opening of the largest onshore wind farm in the Netherlands.