Corporate Eye

Best Global Green Brands of 2014

green globe green brandsInterbrand has released its ranking of the best global green brands in 2014, and the results might surprise you.

What brands come to your mind when you think of “green.” What about when you think about the broader term of sustainability?

I’m going to guess it’s not Ford, but that is the #1 brand on the Interbrand 2014 ranking of the best global green brands.

Back in 2012, I wrote a post here for Corporate Eye that discussed why so many automotive brands ranked high on Interbrand’s ranking of the 2012 best global green brands. In short, a significant part of Interbrand’s ranking system relies on consumer perception of brands. Automotive brands invest large amounts of money into promoting their green initiatives, and they’re rewarded with higher consumer perception scores in Interbrand’s ranking methodology.

In 2012, eight of the 21 brands on Interbrand’s list were automotive brands. In 2014, only six of the top 21 brands on the list are automotive brands. However, this year’s list includes 50 brands, and 10 of them (1 in 5 or 20%) are automotive brands. In fact, there are more automotive brands on the list than brands from any other industry.

Here is a breakdown by industry of the 50 best global green brands of 2014:

  • Automotive – 10 brands
  • Technology – 2 brands
  • FNCG – 6 brands
  • Electronics – 5 brands
  • Diversified – 3 brands
  • Sporting goods – 2 brands
  • Beverages – 2 brands
  • Apparel – 2 brands
  • Restaurants – 2 brands
  • Financial services – 2 brands
  • Home furnishings – 1 brand
  • Transportation – 1 brand
  • Energy – 1 brand
  • Media – 1 brand
  • Alcohol – 1 brand

In addition to consumer perceptions based on six key criteria (authenticity, relevance, differentiation, consistency, presence, and understanding of environmental claims), brands are also evaluated based on publicly available information related to governance, stakeholder engagement, operations, supply chain, transportation and logistics, and products and services.

Based on consumer surveys and analysis, the top 10 best global brands of 2014 are:

  1. Ford – automotive
  2. Toyota – automotive
  3. Honda – automotive
  4. Nissan – automotive
  5. Panasonic – electronics
  6. Nokia – electronics
  7. Sony – electronics
  8. Adidas – sporting goods
  9. Danone – FMCG
  10. Dell – technology

Four of the top 10 best global green brands of 2014 are automotive brands and four are electronics brands. One is a sporting goods brand, and one is from the FMCG sector. Is that surprising to you?

Looking on the positive side, it’s good to see so many companies that you wouldn’t expect to find on a list of the best global green brands actually investing in green initiatives. From the brand perspective, promoting their green investments is certainly paying off in terms of improved consumer perceptions. In the end, improved consumer perceptions lead to sales, so getting on this list is a success for each of the companies that prioritized green initiatives over the past year.

Below is a video introduction from Interbrand that provides an overview of what the ranking is and why it’s done.

What do you think? Leave a comment and share your thoughts about the list of the best global green brands in 2014.

Image: Sebastian Bergmann licensed BY CC-SA 2.0

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Susan Gunelius is the author of 10 marketing, social media, branding, copywriting, and technology books, and she is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She also owns Women on Business, an award-wining blog for business women. She is a featured columnist for and, and her marketing-related articles have appeared on websites such as,,, and more. She has over 20 years of experience in the marketing field having spent the first decade of her career directing marketing programs for some of the largest companies in the world, including divisions of AT&T and HSBC. Today, her clients include large and small companies around the world and household brands like Citigroup, Cox Communications, Intuit, and more. Susan is frequently interviewed about marketing and branding by television, radio, print, and online media organizations, and she speaks about these topics at events around the world. You can connect with her on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+.