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LEGO, IKEA and BMW Group top list of UK’s most reputable companies, but UK PLCS lag way behind

Reputation Institute’s UK RepTrak® 150 identifies the most reputable companies among the UK general public

LONDON – The Lego Group, IKEA and BMW Group top the UK RepTrak® 150 ranking of the most reputable companies among the UK general public, Reputation Institute announced today, based on more than 50,000 ratings collected in the first quarter of 2016 from members of the UK general public.


The top 10 companies in the 2016 UK RepTrak®, which are all perceived as having an “Excellent” reputation, are:

  1. Lego Group
  2. IKEA
  3. BMW Group
  4. Sony
  5. Rolls-Royce Aerospace
  6. Aston Martin
  7. Rolex
  8. Samsung
  9. Bosch
  10. Kellogg’s

The RepTrak® system measures a company’s ability to deliver on stakeholder expectations on the seven key rational dimensions of reputation: products and services, innovation, workplace, governance, citizenship, leadership and performance.

Companies are ranked on a score from 0-100 based on their overall reputation, and are grouped as Excellent (80+), Strong (70-79), Average (60-69), Weak (40-59) or Poor (Below 40).


UK Plcs are losing out on reputation in their home market. Only two of the top 10 companies are UK Plcs, and international companies dominate the top 50. Home-domiciled companies make up just 26% of the top 50 and 41% of the top 150. 

Kasper Ulf Nielsen, Executive Partner at Reputation Institute, comments “The UK general public has a lower perception of UK companies across all seven dimensions of reputation, compared to international companies operating in the UK. This shows a lack of both emotional and rational connection which is unique to the UK. Across the world, home countries tend to have a stronger reputation, and this lack of reputation capital puts UK Plcs at a disadvantage in their home market.”

As shown below, only four UK companies have been able to build an “Excellent” reputation with a RepTrak® score above 80.

  • 5. Rolls Royce Aerospace (82.6)
  • 6. Aston Martin (82.1)
  • 13. ASOS (80.4)
  • 14. Jaguar Land Rover (80.4)

At the other end of the scale, of the 27 companies who scored “Poor” and sit well outside of the RepTrak® 150 (ranking 251 and below), all but two are UK and Irish companies.

UK companies ranked “Poor” include five utilities and financial services companies, three transport companies, and two gambling and telecom companies. Although it might be unsurprising that UK companies from these sectors perform the worst, there are notable exceptions.

Nationwide Building Society was the top scoring of all UK retail banks, with a “Strong” score of 72.4. O2 also rated strongly in the eyes of the UK general public at 74.9, whereas all other UK telecoms providers failed to score higher than an “Average” performance of 64.


The following companies have seen the largest improvements from 2015 to 2016:

The below businesses have seen the largest declines from 2015 to 2016:

  • 58. Airbus Group (+12.6 points)
  • 228. HSBC (+9.8 points)
  • 9. Aldi (+9.7 points)
  • 48. Burberry (+9.7 points)
  • 140. Hershey Company (+8.9 points)
  • 267. Volkswagen (-27.4 points)
  • 192. SABMiller (7.9 points)
  • 156. Nestle (-7.7 points)
  • 163. Admiral (-7.3 points)
  • 247. EDF Energy (-7.1 points)

Unsurprisingly, Volkswagen AG falls from having a top 10 reputation (ranked 8th) in 2015 to a vulnerable position in 2016 (ranked 267th) following the high-profile emissions scandal.  The critical factor in this loss of reputation has been a huge drop in the number of consumers willing to support the company in specific circumstances, as shown below. 


Recommend company

Buy products

Give benefit of doubt









Recommendation and trust of Volkswagen AG has decreased by more than half during this time, which underscores the impact that corporate reputation has on the business.


Reputation Institute’s research reveals that reputation drives business results. The better the reputation, the more support a company gets. For companies with an average reputation, only 12% would definitely buy the products; this climbs to 28% if the reputation is strong, but increases to 76% if the reputation is excellent. “The impact from reputation on the business is massive, which is why the leading companies in the world are managing this asset in a systematic way,” says Nielsen.

In the UK, consumers must consider companies’ reputations “Excellent” in order to have more than 50% of those surveyed claim that they would say something positive about a company, recommend its products, trust it to do the right thing, welcome it into the local community, and work for or invest in it.

Reputation Institute, ranking

Download the full 2016 UK RepTrak® report at

Reputation Institute is hosting a webinar to discuss the UK’s most reputable companies on Thursday, April 14th, at 3pm BST. Register for the webinar on our website at

About Reputation Institute

Reputation Institute (RI) is the world’s leading consulting and advisory firm for reputation. RI enables many of the world’s leading companies to make more confident business decisions that build and protect reputation capital, analyze risk and sustainability topics, and drive competitive advantage. RI’s most prominent management tool is the RepTrak® model for analyzing the reputations of companies and institutions — best known via the Global RepTrak® 100, the world’s largest and most comprehensive study of corporate reputations, as well as Country RepTrak® and City RepTrak® studies that look at reputation across organizations within a given geography.

For more information please contact:

Jessica Warner

(+44) 207 294 3601

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