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Aviva soars up the branding charts after dropping Norwich Union name

PUBLISHED: 15:00 25 February 2010 | UPDATED: 08:25 02 July 2010

Kate Scotter

Aviva has become one of the highest risers in a survey of the strongest 500 business brands after ditching the Norwich Union name.

The insurance giant, which employs about 6,500 in Norwich, has climbed up from 315th to 144th in the annual Business Superbrands top 500 survey.

Aviva has become one of the highest risers in a survey of the strongest 500 business brands after ditching the Norwich Union name.

The insurance giant, which employs about 6,500 in Norwich, has climbed up from 315th to 144th in the annual Business Superbrands top 500 survey.

The news comes less than a year after the company axed its former 200-year-old brand name in a bid to boost its global presence.

Billed as the biggest rebranding in UK financial history, the changeover saw advertising campaigns featuring actor Bruce Willis actress, model Elle Macpherson and ex-Beatle Ringo Starr, all of whom achieved major fame after changing their names.

Amanda Mackenzie, Aviva's chief marketing officer, said: “We are very proud of the speed with which the Aviva brand has become a major asset for our business.

“Our re-brand from Norwich Union is more than just a new name, it reflects the way we're transforming the business to recognise and service customers' needs and that's an ongoing journey.”

The survey is compiled for the Superbrands organisation by the Centre for Brand Analysis, which creates league tables based on the opinions of marketing experts, business professionals and thousands of British consumers.

Aviva was the second biggest climber behind Premier Inn which jumped 197 places to 240th.

Last week, the brand name was also ranked as the country's ninth most valuable brand in a survey by the consultancy Brand Finance Number.

Simon Middleton, the Brand Strategy Guru, said he was not surprised by Aviva's rebranding success.

He said: “When there was first talk about them changing their name, I always said it was a good idea - they are now in a global marketplace and the Norwich Union name just didn't cut the mustard, they needed a name that could go global and it was a sensible, strategic move. I'm not at all surprised that they have gone up the league.”

Elsewhere in the table, Google slipped from top position, which it held last year and in 2008, to fifth while Microsoft took the top spot.

Rolls Royce Group retained its second position and Blackberry rose from 42nd to third.

Do you have a story for the Evening News? Call reporter Kate Scotter on 01603 772326 or email kate.scotter@archant.co.uk

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