TOKYO -- Toyota Motor ranked fifth among the 100 Best Global Brands 2016 compiled by U.S. consultancy Interbrand, as the automaker became the first Asian company to join the top five.
Samsung Electronics at No. 7 was the only other Asian company in the top 10. Huawei Technologies and Lenovo Group from China made the list of 100, as did two other South Korean companies.
Japanese electronics manufacturer Sony ranked 58th, the same as last year, but its brand value increased for the first time in eight years. Both Toyota and Sony got a boost from their digital communication with consumers, as well as research and development of artificial intelligence. Four other Japanese companies made the top 100 in the list announced Wednesday.
Toyota was No. 6 last year, and Interbrand attributes the rise to the company's long-term perspective in business strategy and outstanding brand appeal via digital media.
Honda Motor slid to 21st from 19th, while Nissan Motor climbed to 43rd from 49th. German automaker Volkswagen, hit by its diesel emissions scandal, declined by five spots to 40th. Mercedes-Benz ascended to ninth from 12th. American electric-auto maker Tesla Motors made the top 100 for the first time.
Toyota's brand value rose 9% while Nissan's increased 22%. Sony gained 8% as concentration in core competence stemming from structural reform helped revive the brand value, as did products with strong appeal to consumers, such as ultrahigh-definition 4K televisions and virtual reality equipment, according to Interbrand.
Apple ranked first and Google stood second -- both unchanged for four years in a row. Facebook rose to 15th from 23rd owing to aggressive implementations of effective mergers, acquisitions and tie-ups.
By business segment, retailers scored the sharpest increase in brand value, at 19%. U.S. e-commerce giant Amazon.com soared 33%.
Interbrand bases its ranking on analyzing factors such as a brand's impact on consumer purchasing behavior as well as the companies' financial standing.