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Penrith Panthers comes top of Most Valuable Oz Sports Brand

Embargoed until 12:01am EST 05/12/2013

Penrith Panthers comes top of the Brand Finance Most Valuable Aussie Sports Brand 2013

This year’s edition of the Top 20 Most Valuable Australian Sports Brands has seen Penrith Panthers take the number one spot, its brand being valued at $46.2 million. However, a brand rating of AA- makes it one of the weakest brands. The Panthers Group businesses have closely associated the brand successfully with the elite team to create a strong business, which has resulted in the high valuation.

There are 6 NRL teams in the Top 20 Most Valuable Australian Sports Brands. The Sydney Roosters have the highest brand rating of AAA-. Tim Sheens’ Kangaroos displayed a master class on Saturdays Rugby League World Cup Final. With Jonathan Thurston winning man of the match and team mate Billy Slater the Golden Boot. Their respective clubs North Queensland Toyota Cowboys and Melbourne Storm will be keen to leverage their success to attract further members and support from fans.

The AFL is striving ahead in terms of total Brand Value accounting for 14 teams with a total brand value of $334 million. This is more than double the value of NRL teams in the Top 20 whose combined brand value totals $151 million.

The key finding from the brand equity research conducted by Landor is that the AFL teams have greater brand equity except for the NRL’s Brisbane Bronco’s which has the greatest brand equity of any team. The study also showed that 27% of respondents interact with AFL more than once a week compared to only 21% for NRL.

Key Findings

• The Kangaroos dominance in Saturday’s World Cup Final, showcased the talent that the NRL has been capable of producing thanks to the strong brands in the League. The combined brand value of NRL Clubs in the Top 20 exceeds $150 million in 2013.

The Penrith Panthers top Brand Finance League Table with a brand valuation of $46.2 million, as the Panther’s Group successfully leverage the Panther’s association across a wide variety of operations.

The Collingwood Magpies possess the most valuable AFL brand (2nd overall) with a brand value of $39.1 million after a financially successful year. The Magpies also received a AAA brand rating, the highest rating in the table thanks to a loyal fan base and strong performances on the field.

• The Sydney office of Landor Associates commissioned an online study to determine the Brand Strength of sports teams as part of the Top 20 study, with the Brisbane Broncos topping the ranking across all codes. The Australian public ranked each team across four pillars of Knowledge, Relevance, Differentiation and Esteem.

The Essendon Bombers brand rating has suffered this year dropping from potentially a AAA- to a AA+ since the investigation by ASADA. The fall caused overall brand value to drop around 5% to $24.0million. The impact could have been more severe but sponsors and fans have remained loyal. Moving into a new state of the art training facility could see Essendon bounce back for the 2014 season.

Although other teams from Rugby Union, A-League and Big Bash were included in the research, only AFL and NRL teams were valuable enough to be featured in the Top 20 Most Valuable Australian Sports Brands.

Commenting on the results Richard Haigh, Brand Finance Australia, Director “Branding is important to sports teams because it validates their ability to generate value both on and off the field. This is particularly true amongst Aussie Rules brands which excite incredible brand loyalty but even they were pipped by the Penrith Panthers.

Commenting on the results Dominic Walsh, Landor Australia, Managing Director “There’s no doubt that the AFL goes deeper in the Australian Psyche than NRL – this goes back to its unique Australian Heritage.”

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