Against a backdrop of internal focus as a consequence of an urgent rebuilding of economies devastated by the Covid-19 pandemic and the acceleration of AfCFTA’s goal of driving greater intra-African trade, Brand Africa has unveiled the 12th annual Brand Africa 100: Africa’s Best Brands 2022 rankings of the Top 100 most admired brands in Africa.

After a five-year decline, the 2022 Brand Africa 100 Africa’s Best Brands survey and ranking of the best brand in Africa saw African brands surge 4% to 17% from an all-time low of 13% in 2020 and 2021.

Challenger brands such as South Africa’s lifestyle footwear brands, Bathu (number 52) and Drip (number 65), despite being primarily available in South African but accessible everywhere through e-commerce, rocketed into the Top 100.

MTN, the perennially-leading African brand returned to the Top 10 as the highest ranking African brand and switched places with Dangote as the top African brand recalled when prompted to consolidate its status as the #1 African brand.

Dangote, founded in 1981 by Nigerian Aliko Dangote, emerged as the number one brand that symbolises African pride in a question where Brand Africa sought to establish which brand in Africa is a flag carrier and embodiment of rising optimism and pride in Africa.

South Africa, led by MTN, leads the African list, with Nigeria, led by Dangote, the overall number one brand, at 28%, and Kenya with flag carrier, Kenya Airways, at 8% and Ethiopia, with its flag carrier brand, Ethiopian Airline at 4%.

Non-African brands, led by overall pace-setter Nike for the fifth consecutive year, continue to dominate with a share of 83% of the most admired brands in Africa.

In a separate list of the Top 25 most admired financial services brands, African brands dominate with 68% of the share to 32% for non-African brands.

DStv, through its brands across the continent, has consolidated its position as the #1 African media brand for the second year running, in a category that is fast going digital and mobile.

Brand Africa also recognised those leaders who are the catalyst for growth for Made in Africa brands both in corporate and in those who have championed and supported the development of great local brands in supporting industries.

GT Bank’s Group CEO, Segun Agbaje and Nigerian doyenne of marketing, founder and chairman of Troyka Group were awarded the inaugural Africa Brand Leadership Excellence awards for inspiring brand-led excellence that drives the growth of made in Africa brands.

“As we emerge out of the pandemic and Africa seeks to assert itself, the results are very inspiring and bode well of an African renaissance led by competitive world class African brands,” says Thebe Ikalafeng, founder and chairman of Brand Africa and Brand Leadership.

“With increased number of countries and greater sample size this year, more than ever, and especially so during the pandemic, mobile proved to be the effective tool for us to reach and access respondents across the continent,” comments Bernard Okasi, director of research at GeoPoll, which has been the lead data collection partner since 2015.

Karin Du Chenne, chief growth officer: Africa Middle East for Kantar, which has been the insight lead for Brand Africa since inception in 2010, says: “Despite volumes of brands analysed as a results of increased sample size in terms of respondents and countries, the survey continues to yield a very consistent picture of brands and trends that are transforming the continent.”