Index: Myer’s reputation suffers

bernie_hawkins_myerIn 2009, when former Myer CEO Bernie Brookes listed the department store on the Australian stock exchange, Myer was ranked as one of the top 10 most reputable companies in Australia.

Today, of the 60 companies ranked on the Australian Corporate Reputation Index, it is ranked 45th.

The Reputation Institute’s Index, the 2018 edition of which was released yesterday, has tracked a steepening decline in how consumers view the beleaguered department store chain relative to other Australian businesses.

Myer ranked in the top 10 Australian companies on the index from 2008-2012, but in tandem with its ailing trading performance had dropped to 22nd last year, a result that has again worsened with the largest contraction in points on the index.

It comes just a month after the retailer incurred a $515 million write down on the value of its brand names and goodwill, reflecting the erosion of the iconic business in recent years.

Consumers were clear on what Myer was lacking – it ranked 60th on the individual measurement of innovation in 2018.

“These results indicate that Myer has not met the challenge of adapting to the changing demands of consumers and an increasingly competitive landscape,” Reputation Institute ANZ managing director Oliver Freedman said.

Just under 6000 Australian consumers were surveyed in late February/early March for the index, which encompasses Australia’s top 60 companies by revenue.

JB Hi-Fi was once again the top ranked retailer on the index, despite its rank falling from 3rd to 6th in 2018 as airlines such as Virgin, Qantas and rank one business Air New Zealand surged.

German entrant Aldi maintained its position at rank 9, well above Wesfarmers at rank 20 (19th in 2017) and Woolworths, which improved from rank 26 in 2017 to rank 22 in the latest index.

Myer’s reputational woes are worsening, but it still fares better than 7-Eleven, which failed to change its rank in 2018 and remains at 58th on the overall measurement, above Telstra and News Corp Australia.

Freedman said that the overall results indicate that Australian companies are bucking the trend in relation to how consumers are viewing reputation.

“Globally, the Reputation Institute is seeing a trend of nationalism, where local consumers rank local companies higher in terms of overall reputation,” he said.

“However, Australia is veering from this pattern, with our top 10 containing a mix of Australian and international companies, showing even those organisations headquartered overseas can make an impact locally with good leadership, a strong product and community involvement among other measures.”

Access exclusive analysis, locked news and reports with Inside Retail Weekly. Subscribe today and get our premium print publication delivered to your door every week.


You have 7 articles remaining. Unlock 15 free articles a month, it’s free.