China 500 2023 - English Language
The annual English language report on the most valuable and strongest Chinese brands
Brand Finance China 500 2023 - English Language
Top brands shine amidst pandemic measures with most improving rank positions: Brand Finance China 500 2023 Report
· ICBC remains most valuable brand with over US$69.5 billion brand value
· WeChat’s “super app” ambitions lends to its retention of strongest brand title
· Seres is fastest growing brand with 123% brand value growth
· WeChat has the highest Sustainability Perceptions Value at US$8.4 billion
Despite measures taken across China to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic in 2022, over half of the top 25 brands in the nation posted rank improvements, according to Brand Finance’s China 500 2023 report which ranks the nation’s 500 most valuable and strongest brands.
ICBC (brand value down 7% to US$69.5 billion) retained its lead as the most valuable brand in China in our rankings this year. The banking brand’s strong commitment towards achieving stability, progress and reform as well as its significant role in supporting China’s economy were important drivers of its brand performance. In the commercial sector, ICBC expanded its credit, which made funds more direct and accessible. This not only facilitated the growth and development of businesses, but also allowed it to maintain its lead in extending the largest amount of loans in key industries such as manufacturing, sci-tech and agriculture, with a focus on improving urban-rural collaboration. In the private sector, the brand saw a record high increase in customer deposits exceeding 3.4 trillion yuan (US$491.89 billion).
WeChat (brand value down 19% to US$50.2 billion) defended its title as the strongest brand in China, maintaining its AAA+ brand strength rating. The brand has aims of being a “super app” that provides a multitude of services and offerings including entertainment, messaging, mobile payments and e-commerce through a single interface – all in the name of improving user experiences with high app versatility and comprehensiveness. Also contributing to WeChat’s brand strength performance were the environmental, social and governance (ESG) initiatives and commitments undertaken by parent company, Tencent. Guided by its “Tech for Good” vision, Tencent’s aims of achieving carbon neutrality in its operations and supply chains by 2030 saw it purchase 336.42 TWh of green energy in 2022, reducing carbon emissions by 241.95 megatonnes.
Seres (brand value up 123% to US$739.25 million) is the fastest growing brand in our rankings, with an unrivalled 118-place jump to 333rd position. We note that several upbeat factors were key contributors to Seres’ brand value including expanding its presence into overseas markets such as a foray into Italy in March 2023, a partnership with Huawei to develop electric vehicle technology as Seres endeavours to producing a total of 1 million electric cars by 2026 and a 1.5 billion yuan (US$208 million) investment in a new energy vehicle industrial park project in China's Liangjiang New Area in Chongqing City.
Media giant WeChat has both the highest Sustainability Perceptions Score (6.27 out of 10) and Sustainability Perceptions Value (US$8.4 billion) of any brand included in our rankings this year. WeChat’s pole position is related to positive stakeholder perceptions of its brand, showing that consumers have confidence in WeChat’s sustainability commitments. However, it is important to note that WeChat’s position at the top of the Sustainability Perceptions Value table is not an assessment of its overall sustainability performance. Instead, it highlights the value that the media brand has tied up in the sustainability perceptions of stakeholders.
 Brand value is understood as the net economic benefit that a brand owner would achieve by licensing the brand in the open market. The full ranking, additional insights, charts, more information about the methodology and definitions of key terms are available in the Brand Finance China 500 2023 report.
 Brand Finance determines the relative strength of brands through a balanced scorecard of metrics evaluating marketing investment, stakeholder equity and business performance. Compliant with ISO 20671, Brand Finance’s assessment of stakeholder equity incorporates original market research data from over 150,000 respondents in 38 countries and across 31 sectors.
 As part of its analysis, Brand Finance assesses the role that specific brand attributes play in driving overall brand value. One such attribute growing rapidly in significance is sustainability. Brand Finance assesses how sustainable specific brands are perceived to be, represented by a Sustainability Perceptions Score. The value that is linked to this score, the Sustainability Perceptions Value, is then calculated for each brand.