American multi-national sports apparel and accessories maker Nike has emerged on top of Forbes' 'The World's Most Valuable Sports Brands 2014'. The brand value of Nike in 2014 is estimated to be at $19 billion, up from $17.3 billion last year, according to Forbes.
"In other words, if the athletic apparel company had a different name, its market value would be $52 billion instead of $71 billion," Forbes said.
For businesses that are not publicly traded, or are subsidiaries of another company, the brand value is the difference between the estimated value of the business brand and what the value of a similar business is worth, it added.
"Nike commands 62 per cent of the US athletic footwear market, including the Jordan brand, and its market share rose 100 basis points (1 per cent) in August," Forbes said.
Walt Disney-owned sports channel ESPN, is at number two in the rankings with an estimated brand value of $16.5 billion, up from $15 billion last year.
ESPN is expected to generate $4.5 billion in cash flow this year and commands the highest average monthly affiliate subscriber fee at $6.04, Forbes said.
Nike's rival German multi-national corporation Adidas comes in at number three in the listing, with its brand value having gone down to $5.8 billion from $7.1 billion last year.
"Adidas has not been helped by repeated injuries to NBA star Derrick Rose, the Chicago Bulls guard whom it signed in 2012 to a 13-year $185 million deal, the biggest ever," Forbes said.
Sports television company Sky Sports at number four, followed by American sports clothing and accessories company Under Armour round off the top five in the Forbes list. (See Full List)