Ukraine brand value hits $56 bil­lion in 2016, No. 4 in na­tional growth

Kyiv Post - - Front Page - BY OLGA RU­DENKO RU­DENKO@KYIVPOST.COM

The per­cep­tion and value of Ukrainian-made goods are im­prov­ing glob­ally, not just do­mes­ti­cally.

Brand Fi­nance, a val­u­a­tion and strat­egy con­sul­tancy head­quar­tered in Lon­don, said Ukraine had one of the five top-per­form­ing na­tion brands in their 2016 Na­tion Brand re­port. The com­pany re­leases an an­nual study of global per­cep­tions of na­tional brands.

While Ukraine is still rel­a­tively low in the gen­eral list, in 59th place

among 100 na­tions, it was one of the big­gest im­provers in the last year, climb­ing nine po­si­tions.

Ukraine showed a 27 per­cent growth in 2016 in the value of its na­tional brand, to $56 bil­lion from $44 bil­lion, ac­cord­ing to the re­port, the fourth-high­est jump among the na­tions sur­veyed.

“Still a long way to go and so much to do, but these num­bers are en­cour­ag­ing,” said Amer­i­can Cham­ber of Com­merce pres­i­dent Andy Hun­der. “Coun­try brand is piv­otal to at­tract­ing new for­eign di­rect in­vest­ment.”

Ukraine, how­ever, es­sen­tially only clawed back places it had lost over the last cou­ple years be­cause of Rus­sia’s war against the Don­bas and eco­nomic re­ce­si­son, ac­cord­ing to Robert Haigh, a mar­ket­ing and com­mu­ni­ca­tions di­rec­tor at Brand Fi­nance. The growth re­flects the rel­a­tive sta­bi­liza­tion of the sit­u­a­tion.

“If the mil­i­tary sit­u­a­tion can be fur­ther con­tained, then there is def­i­nitely scope for sig­nif­i­cant growth,” Haigh said. “Ukraine has huge eco­nomic po­ten­tial and, like Poland, is large enough to be seen as a dis­tinct en­tity by the wider world, un­like smaller Eastern Euro­pean coun­tries, which can strug­gle to dif­fer­en­ti­ate them­selves.”

Anna Pol­ishko, a Brand Fi­nance ex­pert who car­ried out the anal­y­sis of Ukraine for the re­port, says the war con­trib­uted to im­prov­ing Ukraine’s place by rais­ing gen­eral aware­ness of the coun­try.

“Tak­ing into con­sid­er­a­tion the ac­tive in­for­ma­tion war­fare and in­ten­sive me­dia cov­er­age of the con­flict, aware­ness of Ukraine has risen sig­nif­i­cantly,” Pol­ishko told the Kyiv Post.

A na­tion’s brand value is cal­cu­lated from a num­ber of fac­tors, in­clud­ing the na­tion’s se­cu­rity, cor­po­rate ethics, cor­rup­tion, im­age, qual­ity of life, mar­kets and more. The for­mula in­cludes an as­sess­ment of brand strength and brand rev­enue fore­casts to ar­rive at a dol­lar value. Na­tions re­ceive one of 18 grades – from AAA+ at the high­est to D at the low­est. Ukraine got an A rat­ing, the eighth high­est grade.

In­ter­est­ingly, the low­est score Ukraine got wasn’t for se­cu­rity – de­spite the war – but for its ju­di­cial sys­tem. It was eval­u­ated at just 40 out of 100 points, while se­cu­rity got 45 points. The high­est score Ukraine re­ceived was for its Peo­ple and Skills – 60 points.

Only Lux­em­bourg, Pak­istan, and the Czech Repub­lic showed faster growth than Ukraine. The worst per­form­ing na­tions were Jor­dan, Cameroon, Brazil, Turkey and Azer­bai­jan.

In the over­all rank­ing, Ukraine sits be­tween Greece (58th) and the Do­mini­can Repub­lic (60th). The coun­tries on top of the list are the United States, China, Ger­many, Ja­pan, and the United King­dom

Roxy Mon­roe, a 22-yearold Ja­maican model, poses in vyshy­vanka made by Ukrainian brand of eth­nic cloth­ing Etn­odim in New York. (Cour­tesy of Etn­odim)

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