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Brand Categories

Category Growth


Luxury the big winner as sector surges


The composition of the French Top 50 ranking has changed little in the past year in terms of the categories represented and their relative strength. What is striking, however, is the variation in value growth of brands over 12 months, depending on the business sector in which a brand is operating.


As we saw last year, what marks out the French Top 50 as distinct from the many other BrandZ rankings WPP does around the world is the dominance of luxury brands.


These names are global legends in high-end fashion, jewelry and accessories, and they occupy just under a fifth of places in the 2019 list.


They feature primarily at the top of the ranking, and between them account for almost half the value of the Top 50 brands combined.


Luxury brands’ combined value has risen 54 percent this year – by far the biggest rise of any category in France.


This is partly a result of rebounding demand for premium goods in key luxury markets, particularly in Asia. And it reflects the addition to the ranking this year of two new luxury brands: Céline, and Van Cleef & Arpels.


But it also shows the success of many of the most established names in this sector investing in their brands.


They are not just maintaining their “share of voice” in a crowded market, but are also adapting their offering – and the way they communicate – to satisfy and delight increasingly discerning shoppers.


In other categories, there have been minor shifts in the number of brands represented.


There are still 11 food and drink brands, six utilities, six retailers and five transport brands, although there has been some changing of the individual brands that make the 2019 ranking.


Personal care is represented by one fewer brand this year, and there is a new name – Vichy – among the seven that remain.


The arrival of cookware specialist Tefal, in 46th place on its debut, is the first French brand to make the Top 50 from the Home Appliances category.



Growth in category value 2018-19 (US$ million)



Luxury                              54%

Personal Care                  7%

Utilities                           1%

Food & Drink                   14%

Finance                           -11%

Retail                              -2%

Transport                        +5%

Home Appliances            n/a (no brands in 2018 ranking)