Valuation and strategy consultancy Brand Finance has compiled a list of the 50 most valuable clubs in the footballing world.
A brand’s power/strength is assessed based on metrics such as stadium capacity, squad size and value, social media presence, on-pitch performance, fan satisfaction, fair-play rating, stadium utilization, and revenue – to create a ‘Brand Strength Index’ (BSI) score out of 100.
This is used to determine what proportion of a business’s revenue is contributed by the brand, which is projected into perpetuity and discounted to determine the brand’s value.
Real Madrid’s superb season sees Los Blancos eclipse rivals Barcelona to become the world’s most powerful football club brand. After claiming yet another La Liga title and a record 12th Champions League victory, Real’s Brand Strength Index score is up from 94.6 to 96.1, edging ahead of Barcelona on 95.4.
Despite being football’s most powerful brand, in terms of brand value, Real however, still trails Manchester United by a considerable margin in terms of value.
United, despite finishing a disappointing 6th in the Premier League, is the most valuable brand in football, worth US$1.733 billion to Real’s US$1.419 billion.
United lifted the Europa League trophy for the first time last month following their 2-0 victory over Ajax.
View the list of the 50 most valuable football brands here
Premier League clubs continue to lead the world when it comes to commercialising their brands; six of the top ten most valuable football brands are English.
Title rivals Chelsea and Tottenham have recorded some of the biggest gains this year after successful seasons that saw Chelsea regain its status as England’s best, under dynamic new manager Antonio Conte.
Commercially, Chelsea stand to gain significantly through a reported £900 million, 15 year deal with Nike as well as from a near 50% increase to the capacity of Stamford Bridge. Tottenham is also expanding its home; the new White Hart Lane has been innovatively designed and will offer 61,000 spectators the opportunity to see Spurs on home turf.
Tottenham’s brand value is up 58% on last year and Chelsea’s 61% to US$1.248 billion.
All Premier League teams continue to benefit from the vast revenues brought in by the latest broadcasting rights deal with Sky and BT.
The relatively equitable split is particularly helpful to smaller clubs and helps to explain how a club such as Bournemouth (which joined the Premier League just two years ago and comes from a town of just 180,000 inhabitants) controls a more valuable brand than much longer established European top tier clubs such as Olympique Lyonnais, Inter Milan, and AS Roma.
The costs of missing out on Premier League status are clear too. Another season in the Championship for Aston Villa and relegation for Sunderland see both drop out of this year’s list.
Sunderland’s loss has been Newcastle’s gain. The Magpies’ promotion will see revenues return and restore international exposure to the Tyneside club. As a result, brand value is up 92% to US$247 million, making Newcastle this year’s fastest growing brand.