Technology & Telecom Tops in Corporate Media Reputation, Retail Does Well

August 22, 2008

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PR

Technology and telecommunications companies nailed down seven of the top 10 slots in the 2008 Q2 Cision Index, a quarterly assessment of how news coverage reflects and helps shape the corporate reputation of the 100 largest US companies.

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Led by Microsoft and Apple Computer, other tech-related companies in Cision’s top 10 are Hewlett-Packard at No. 4, Verizon at No. 5 and Intel at No. 6.

Among tech & telecom companies:

  • Dell Computer performed strongly, jumping 32 positions to No. 8, marking a strong recovery from its position near the bottom of the list in 2006.
  • Comcast showed an impressive performance, leaping 20 spots into the No. 10 position.
  • Five of the nine IT companies tracked by the Index ranked in the top 10, while the four telecom companies were the strongest industry group overall, with Verizon at No. 5 and Sprint Nextel at No. 26. Sprint Nextel was the largest gainer in the Index, rising 70 positions.

Among non-tech companies:

  • Wal-Mart ranks No. 3, climbing to its highest ranking in two years as consumers concerned with the current economy flocked to the retail giant’s low prices.
  • Coca-Cola’s surge to No. 9 was driven by higher profits, exceeding sales expectations, and a focus on faster growing, emerging markets by acquiring hot brands such as Fuze, Fruitsi and Vitaminwater.
  • Walt Disney maintained a spot in the top 10, finishing at No. 7.
  • Kroger joined Sprint Nextel in climbing 70 positions, as it reported solid financials.
  • BestBuy climbed 46 spots after announcing an investment in Car Phone Warehouse, Europe’s largest cell phone retailer.
  • UPS climbed 41 spots after it revealed a deal with DHL that could result in $1 billion in additional annual revenue.

The weakening economy’s impact on the Index is demonstrated by net negative news scores (more negative news than positive or neutral news) for more than one-third of companies, double the number reported in Q1. Financial services companies, which are being strongly affected by the economy, represented 4 of the 10 largest decliners this quarter.

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“Many analysts have predicted that tech companies will be among the winners during the current economic slowdown and these Q2 results bear that out,” said Joe Bernardo, President and CEO of Cision North America. “Highly anticipated new products, solid revenues and earnings reports, major acquisitions, and major investments in wireless and mobile technology all helped tech companies reap extensive, positive media coverage.”

About the research: The Index includes analysis of news items to rank the media reputations of the largest 100 U.S. companies. Cision gathers news from America’s most prominent national dailies, and top business and news magazines, ranging from The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal to Fortune and Forbes. Each company is assigned a score based on the number of positive and negative reputation-driving attributes found in each story. These attributes are classified into five dimensions: stakeholder relations, financial management, products and services, organizational integrity and organizational strength.

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