Virat Kohli retains top slot in celebrity brand valuation study for fourth year: Duff & Phelps

New Delhi | Updated on February 04, 2021

Cricketer Virat Kohli was ranked as the most valuable celebrity for the fourth consecutive year with a brand valuation that remained consistent at $237.7 million despite the pandemic, according to the Celebrity Brand Valuation Study 2020 released by Duff & Phelps.

Witnessing a jump of 13.8 per cent, actor Akshay Kumar, too, retained his second spot in the rankings with a brand valuation of $118.9 million, followed by actor Ranveer Singh in the third spot with a brand value of $102.9 million.

Shah Rukh Khan gained in the rankings ($51.5 million) to grab the fourth spot in 2020. However, Deepika Padukonedropped to the fifth position in 2020 with a brand value of $50.4 million, compared to the third position in 2019.

Alia Bhatt and Ayushman Khurrana jointly landed the sixth position. Salman Khan, Amitabh Bachchan and Hrithik Roshan were the other three celebrities that ranked among the top-10 celebrities in terms of brand values.

Impact of the pandemic

Talking about the impact of the pandemic on the endorsement space, Aviral Jain, Managing Director, Duff & Phelps, said: “The overall brand value of the top 20 celebrities in 2020 is estimated at $1 billion, which saw a dip of nearly 5 per cent from last year due to the impact of the pandemic. This is also the first time that we saw a decline in the number of endorsements done by the top 20 celebrities, which had been in the past been growing at 15-16 per cent. In 2020, the number of endorsements fell by about 4 per cent.”

While the number of endorsements by the top-20 celebrities stood at 370 in 2019, it reduced to 357 in 2020.

“While established celebrities continue to dominate our rankings, millennials with a strong social-media presence continue to climb the ladder,” said Jain adding that these rising millennial celebs were in greater demand during the pandemic owing to their popularity among the youth.

Ayushmann Khurrana, Tiger Shroff and Rohit Sharma jumped a few spots to grab the No 6, No 15 and No 17 spots, respectively. Also, Kartik Aaryan debuted on the list at No 20.

The pandemic has also highlighted that a strong social-media presence is no longer a “good to have”, but rather a “must have” in the celebrity endorsement space, the report pointed out. Celebrities such as Tiger Shroff, Kartik Aryan, Ayushmann Khurrana, Akshay Kumar and Virat Kohli saw massive gains in the number of followers on the social-media platforms.

In addition, with the film industry being one of the hardest hit due to the pandemic, 2020 also marked the rise of sports stars. Some in the film industry, including Padukone, also got embroiled in the alleged drug controversy and the industry saw a backlash in the second half of the year.

“While there have been a few celebs whose average endorsement fees dropped, but overall the endorsement fees for the top-20 celebrities was pretty much stable in 2020 compared to the previous year,” Jain added.

Published on February 04, 2021

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