Luxury dominates first BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable French Brands 2018 Ranking

6 Dec 2017

Louis Vuitton bags the top spot with Hermès in second place

PARIS – Luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton, Hermès and CHANEL dominate the first BrandZ™ Top 50 Most Valuable French Brands ranking released today by WPP and Kantar Millward Brown, demonstrating the role that heritage plays in turbo-charging some of the biggest French brands.

The research reveals that France’s most valuable brands are incredibly well known and salient, but it also highlights a key challenge: they can be perceived as less innovative than some smaller French companies and foreign rivals.

Louis Vuitton topped the chart with a brand value of $35.5 billion, followed by Hermès at $26.0 billion. Personal Care brand L’Oréal Paris was close behind at $24.5 billion, with Orange at $17.9 billion and CHANEL at $13.4 billion. The top four brands also feature in the BrandZ Global Top 100 ranking published in June 2017.

The total brand value of the French Top 50 brands is $240.4 billion – some $6 billion more than the equivalent UK 2017 ranking – with the Luxury category accounting for $88.9 billion, followed by Personal Care at $45.4bn and Telecom Providers at $31.4bn. The presence of so many luxury brand, accessories, fragrance and cosmetics names gives the ranking a uniquely French flavour with seven Luxury brands and eight Personal Care brands.

Many of these brands benefit from a century or more of heritage and have contributed hugely to France’s image on the international stage as a hub of beauty, fashion and quality craftsmanship. However, their success both globally and in their home market also highlights one potential weakness: a perceived lack of innovation in many of the country’s largest brands.

The solution will vary from brand to brand. For some it could mean changing recipes, ranges and designs, for others, it’s less about the product and more about the way the brand relates to consumers and projects its brand voice.

The advantages of being perceived as innovative are significant. The top third of brands perceived as innovative in the Top 50 by French consumers have an average brand value of $7.0 billion, just under two-and-a-half times that of the brands in the bottom third, which were valued at $2.9 billion on average.

David Roth, CEO EMEA and Asia, The Store WPP, commented: “France’s new political leadership hopes to reignite its economic growth and the country’s biggest brands can play a huge part in delivering that. If heritage can be combined with innovation, France’s world-leading brands will become even more impressive players at home and abroad.”

The BrandZ Top 10 Most Valuable French Brands 2018
Rank 2018 Brand Category Brand value 2018 ($M)
1 Louis Vuitton Luxury 35,505
2 Hermès Luxury 25,951
3 L’Oréal Paris Personal Care 24,533
4 Orange Telecom Providers 17,915
5 CHANEL Luxury 13,394
6 SFR Telecom Providers 10,603
7 Lancôme Personal Care 9,715
8 Cartier Luxury 7,086
9 AXA Insurance 6,970
10 Carrefour Retail 6,836

BrandZ is the only brand valuation tool grounded in consumer opinion, identifying how much brand alone contributes to corporate value. Businesses worldwide trust BrandZ to provide the information they need to measure, manage and protect their most important intangible asset: their brand.

“France’s largest brands are global icons and their long heritage can be a valuable part of their armoury when it comes to competing with rivals from other countries. There is even greater potential if they can combine this heritage story with innovation. Some are already managing this mix well, but others need to take action if they want to continue to thrive. Such innovation or perceived innovation is critical to a strong brand,” says Pierre Gomy, Managing Director France at Kantar Millward Brown.

The BrandZ French Top 50 report also includes new research from Y&R’s BAV Group in partnership with U.S. News & World Report and the Wharton School, which examines what it takes to build powerful nation brands. According to BAV Group’s 2017 Best Countries report, France ranks ninth overall out of 80 countries, and scores particularly high on heritage and cultural influence as well as modernity and new trends.

Key trends highlighted in the BrandZ French Top 50 study include:

  • Demonstrate the effects, don’t explain the features – French consumers are both sophisticated and impatient. Long lists of product features are not considered interesting, and decisions are driven by what effect a brand or product can have on their lives. Demonstrating the effects of a brand makes a more powerful connection than explaining how this happens.
  • Make the most of data – Many brands now have access to a vast amount of information about the consumers they have relationships with – and those that they’d like to engage with – but can struggle to put that data to good use.
  • Consumers are looking for experiences – Retail is no longer just a place in which to make a transaction, it’s increasingly a place where consumers go to interact with a brand. Much of the browsing and buying experience of shopping can be done more conveniently online, so people are looking for something else from the physical store experience – or more real-world experiences from brands outside the retail context. The goal should be not simply to sell but to engage. Digital life is no longer separate from the rest of people’s lives, and brands are adapting to reflect these blurring lines.
  • Innovation could help pricey brands build relevance – The most valuable French brands may be household names but many carry premium prices and are out of reach for most. So, while they score highly on salience – or the ease with which they spring to mind – they falter when it comes to meaning – a measure of how a brand makes people’s lives better. BrandZ research shows that innovation is strongly linked to increases in relevance and is an area where many French brands could improve.

The BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable French Brands report and ranking, as well as other brand insights for key regions of the world are available online here. The reports, rankings, charts, articles and more can also be accessed through the BrandZ app, which is free to download for Apple IOS and all Android devices from or by searching for BrandZ in the iTunes or Google Play app stores.


About the BrandZ™ Top 50 Most Valuable French Brands Ranking

The valuation behind the BrandZ™ Top 50 Most Valuable French Brands was conducted by Kantar Millward Brown, which specializes in brand equity research and brand valuation. The methodology mirrors that used to calculate the annual BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands ranking, which is now in its 12th year.

Commissioned by Kantar, the ranking combines rigorously analysed financial data from Bloomberg with the opinions of nearly 100,000 French consumers since 2006, gathered for more than 1,039 brands in more than 81 categories. The BrandZ Top 50 Most Valuable French Brands is the most definitive and robust ranking of the country’s brands available, and the brands ranked all meet these eligibility criteria:

  • The brand was originally created in France; and
  • The brand is owned by a publicly traded enterprise, or its financials are published in the public domain.

This approach has produced a carefully conceived ranking of brands in 14 categories.


The suite of BrandZ brand valuation rankings and reports are also available for China, India, Indonesia, Latin America, Brazil, Spain, the UK, the U.S. and Saudi Arabia.

About Kantar Millward Brown

Kantar Millward Brown is a leading global research agency specialising in advertising effectiveness, strategic communication, media and digital, and brand equity research. The company helps clients grow great brands through comprehensive research-based qualitative and quantitative solutions. Kantar Millward Brown operates in more than 55 countries and is part of WPP’s Kantar group, one of the world’s leading data, insight and consultancy companies. Learn more at

About WPP

WPP is the world’s largest communications services group with billings of US$74 billion and revenues of over US$19 billion. Through its operating companies, the Group provides a comprehensive range of advertising and marketing services including: advertising & media investment management; data investment management; public relations & public affairs; branding & identity; healthcare communications; digital, eCommerce and shopper marketing; and specialist communications. The company employs over 200,000 people (including associates and investments) in over 3,000 offices across 112 countries. For more information, visit

WPP was named Holding Company of the Year at the 2017 Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for the seventh year running. WPP was also named, for the sixth consecutive year, the World's Most Effective Holding Company in the 2017 Effie Effectiveness Index, which recognizes the effectiveness of marketing communications. In 2017 WPP was recognised by WARC 100 as the World’s Top Holding Company (third year running).

Media Contact

Florence Maninet
Kantar Millward Brown
[email protected]
+33 (0)1 55 56 40 11