The most valuable brands also happen to have company logos more recognizable than many of the firms' founders. Can you tell what the following 15 iconic logos are, based on just a peek? Take the following quiz.
This year the most valuable brand in the world is Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL), worth over $98 billion, according to the latest ranking by brand consultancy Interbrand.
Apple's value has skyrocketed since 2000, the first year Interbrand produced its ranking. Back then, the computer maker was worth just $6.6 billion and came in at #36.
Apple's good news was bad news for Coca-Cola, which has now, for the first time since 2000, been knocked off its world's-most-valuable perch. It ranks third this year, with Google second.
Coca-Cola's value increased (by 2 percent to $79 billion); it just didn't increase as much as its high tech rivals.
Jez Frampton, global chief executive of Interbrand tells ABC News there are many reasons for Apple's having rocketed to the top. There is no other company, he says, that excels better at engaging its customers.
"They are very good at understanding the innate needs of their customer," he says, maybe even better than those customers understand them.
Henry Ford, he says, used to joke that if he'd asked his customers what they wanted, they'd have said a faster horse. They didn't know they wanted a car until Ford gave it to them, just as a million iPad addicts didn't know they needed an iPad.
Interbrand's rankings take into account three measurements of value: the financial performance of the branded product or service; the influence power of the brand in driving consumer purchasing decisions; and its ability to command a premium price.
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Luxury brand in general moved up this year's list, with Prada making the third most dramatic rise of any company in any category. The Italian fashion house rose 30 percent from last year, just behind top-rising technology brands Facebook and Google. Prada placed ranked the 72nd most valuable brand.
Frampton says Prada has benefited from expansion of the luxury goods market in Asia. "The Chinese consumer is ever-richer."
Nokia and BlackBerry fell in the rankings. BlackBerry fell off the list entirely.
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Nokia fell 65 percent to number 57—the biggest decline in brand value in the history of the ranking.
Read More: Microsoft Buying Nokia's Devices and Phone Business for $7 Billion
"Nokia just failed to see the significance of the smart phone market," says Frampton. "They missed the boat. As for BlackBerry, they took their eye off their core market—business users."
Both companies, he says, had a chance to come back: The strength of their brands bought them time to try to return to the market with some marvelous new product or service. "It bought them breathing space, but time passed, and neither could come back."