Apple has become one of the world's most valued brands, following stellar sales in both developed and emerging markets last year.
It was only beaten into second place by beverages giant Coca Cola in Interbrand's 13th annual global brand survey.
Technology giants dominated the listings in 2012, with social media giant Facebook entering the report at number 69 after making headlines as the third largest IPO in US history
Search engine Google experienced a 26% increase in brand value over the last year which helped to place it an impressive fourth, ahead of its rival Microsoft for the first time. Microsoft placed 5th.
But there was a distinct lack of British companies - just four in the list's 100 companies. This is partly explained by a number of fallers from last year's report, including Barclays which suffered from its rate-rigging scandal.
Barclays wasn't the only financial services company to suffer; Zurich and UBS also failed to make the grade in 2012.
Luxury goods performed well, thanks mainly to their retained brand value - with Burberry placing at 82, Prada at 84, Tiffany and Co at 70 and Hermes at 63.
Louis Vuitton secured 17th place, with Gucci coming in close behind on 38th.
Automotive brands performed well too as companies become more attuned to the emotional connection consumers have with their cars.
This has caused many automakers to develop more effective, technologically savvy ways to reach target markets and help prospective buyers better relate to car brands.
Audi’s digital showroom, Audi City, combes digital product presentations and personal contact with dealers. It placed at 55.
Similarly, Ford (placed at 45) is working hard to improve MyTouch, its in-car communications and entertainment system.
Brands like BMW (placed 12th) and Hyundai (placed 53th) are investing in global brand campaigns and are becoming more digitally connected and tailored to narrower target groups.
The whole industry is hoping to engage customers and prospects in a relevant and personalised manner throughout the entire purchase cycle, the report said.
Another interesting brand to note was Smirnoff, which increased its brand value by 5%, but still only managed to place 90th, one place down on 2011.
Interbrand examines the three key aspects that contribute to a brand’s value:
- The financial performance of the branded products or service
- The role the brand plays in influencing consumer choice
- The strength the brand has to command a premium price, or secure earnings for the company
Elsewhere, Amazon UK, Marks & Spencer and House of Fraser have topped the UK Ecommerce Performance Index study.
However, the report, which scored 25 of the UK’s top retailers’ websites against a detailed best practice benchmark, presented a disappointing average score of 58%, well short of 2011’s score of 63%, which indicates retailers are struggling to keep up with maturing consumer expectations.
David Bowen, product manager at EPiServer which produced the report, commented: “The overall score of 58% demonstrates there is plenty of room for improvement and a real opportunity for savvy retailers to give themselves a significant competitive edge with just a few simple measures.”
The biggest bones of contention for consumer expectations were the speed of checkout process and the cost of delivery.
"We’ve seen some great examples of websites delivering excellent service in particular areas, but very few are scoring well at all stages of the online shopping journey," said Bowen.
"Many retailers have fallen down at different points too, so there’s no single point of concern across the board. Amazon is a great example of how taking care of every stage can deliver a superior customer experience and this will ultimately support increased conversions and sale values.
“Our findings highlight areas where even the UK’s top retailers are risking customer loyalty, extra revenue and market share by underestimating consumer expectation.”