Tech category adds
majority of B2B
Eight of the 30 Newcomers in the 2018 BrandZ™ India Top 75 are business-to-business brands. Although B2B brands are not new to India, they are new to the BrandZ™ India ranking, which has focused exclusively on business-to-consumer brands since the ranking was launched in 2014.
Because India’s brand landscape has changed significantly since 2014, this fifth anniversary edition of the ranking modifies the eligibility criteria to present a more comprehensive picture of brands in India today.
The ranked B2B brands are in categories included in BrandZ™ data, and they derive at least half of their revenue from business clients. BrandZ™ regards banks as B2C brands when consumer business drives at least 25 percent of revenue. The ranked brands are part of the broader Indian B2B sector that includes industrials and other sectors that fall outside the scope of BrandZ™
Five B2B technology brands—Tata Consultancy Services, Infosys, Wipro, HCL Technologies, and Tech Mahindra—make IT the most represented category in the Newcomer list. In addition, two of the newcomer brands are B2B banks—Yes Bank and Bank of Baroda. The other B2B newcomer, Blue Dart, is a courier whose rapid rise parallels the growth of e-commerce.
In some respects, Indian B2B and B2C brands behave like their peers in other parts of the world. As in other parts of the world, Indian B2C brands focus on delivering an immediate benefit to the customer, while the B2B brands are more focused on explaining their capabilities to establish relationships that will return revenue and profit over time.
But in other respects, as often happens in India, these brands are distinctly Indian. And the concentration of global IT brands among the B2B Newcomers, for example, raises the question of whether factors unique to India caused this sector, in particular, to flourish.
Although the five IT brands in the Newcomer ranking provide somewhat similar consultancy services, their origins are distinctive. Tata Consultancy Services began in 1968 as a card-punching company. A group of engineer entrepreneurs started Infosys in 1981. Wipro originated in 1945 as Western India Palm Refined Oils Ltd. And Hindustan Computers Ltd. began in the hardware business in 1976 and is now called HCL Technologies.
Some of these brands had background in software and experience in Silicon Valley. All the brands benefited from India’s priorities and economic realities. Based in a country that values education, the brands had access to a large, well-educated, English-speaking workforce, and could provide high-quality service at a competitive price.
At the time of their establishment, the market for high-tech consultancy was limited in India but growing rapidly in other parts of the world. As the IT brands delivered their lower-cost services to global markets, they employed more Indian workers, added to the country’s taxable revenue, and helped burnish the overseas perception of Brand India.
Today, India’s IT brands are respected global players that compete effectively with other major consultancies. Now in its fiftieth year, Tata Consultancy Services recently surpassed $100 billion in market capitalization. The brand operates in over 45 countries. Infosys also is present worldwide, with almost two-thirds of its revenue generated in the North America.
Healthy brands grow value
The IT brands contribute to the strong results for B2B brands in the India BrandZ™ Top 75. The average value of the B2B IT brands and the courier brand is 37 percent higher than the average value of the Top 75 brands overall. And B2B IT and courier brands receive strong scores in vQ, a BrandZ™ measurement of brand health comprised of five components: Purpose, Innovation, Communications, Experience, and Love.
The B2B IT and courier brands and other service brands are especially strong in Purpose. And B2B IT brands and courier brands outscored other service brands in Innovation and Experience. The vQ score, the composite of the five vital signs, is the same for both B2B IT and courier brands and other service brands—108. An average score is 100.
This vQ strength can help drive the growth of B2B brands in India, as new B2B sectors emerge, including health care services, engineering design, and renewable energy. These sectors rely on educated professionals whose services cost less in India. Their Innovation strength should help Indian B2B brands create an excellent customer Experience. Communication should be vital, too, as more customer may come from outside of India. In health care, for example, individuals are traveling to India to receive more affordable, high quality medical attention.